Arcanaton

Malwing's page

Organized Play Member. 3,630 posts. 115 reviews. 1 list. 3 wishlists. 1 Organized Play character.



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I've had a rough year. Full of so many changes and risks. As a result I have not had the opportunity to find a group for the playtest or do anything with it really. With some free time coming up I wanted to record me making characters with my wife as a form of feedback. The reason for this is that often feedback is in hindsight and you don't really see the process that the players go through in the moment and it gets lost in memory. Sometimes colored with general feelings and analysis. I want to depict how easy or hard it is to make a character, especially with my wife, who has not read the playtest book at all. A follow up would be a one on one session to get a grasp of the rules and how things play out.

So my question for now is how to maximize the usefulness of such a video.

Anything I should consider? Is a top-down shot of the table, hands and books sufficient to know what's going on? Throw in some jokes? What should I focus on commenting on? How should I share said video? Would such a video even be useful for feedback?


I feel like Rise of the Runelords was a huge bang for Pathfinder 1e. A classic story of the PCs becoming heroes, stumbling into a plot of an ancient evil being awoken. Goblins, ghouls and Ogres not only get in but become distinct entities in Pathfinder in styles that are familiar but with a new level of personality. Lots of ways to waste time endearing to the town of Sandpoint that the first book takes forever.

What should the first AP be like?

Of course we all want a good adventure but this isn't something that should be good, but a fantastic adventure that paves the way for a new direction and starts PF2 off with a bang. Something iconic and memorable, new and familiar, exciting but simple.

I'm hoping that with a new edition the first AP will be about exploring a frontier region or new place. If Kingmaker didn't already happen I think that would work but its also loaded with kingdom building when I think being a hero should take priority. A hidden Mcguffin quest into untamed territory filled with buried relics of ancient evils is something I'd like to see, especially if it involves the advancement of the PC's civilization.

A visible but untouchable villain would be great too for an urban adventure of taking down an old system of rule would be worthwhile too. But most of all I'd love to see more memorable villains. I particularly hope for a non-caster villain. I never see Rogues or Monks as the big bad but they have potential. A rogue can have stolen something powerful and previously unstealable and it changes him. A monk could be such a stickler for human perfection that he seeks to wipe out the 'abberant' ancestries that taint humankind. Either way the themes of ushering in new things would be great and establish a new status quo of mooks and monsters that don't get much use as the new face of the dangers of Golarion.


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I knew it.

Back when the technology guide came out I figured Pathfinder was a few adjustments away from a sci-fantasy campaign. I even ran one long before Starfinder came out. Heck, before it was announced I mentioned that the technology guide was testing the waters for some sort of Space Adventures book and now we have Starfinder.

Before that, Pathfinder Unchained seemed to have some things that development wanted to have but edition purity wouldn't allow that so they're now optional rules. I remember it's being accused of being an elaborate Secret Pathfinder Next playtest. Therefore I hereby accuse Paizo of planning this for years and have been releasing material to test our tolerance. Hybrid classes are there specifically to test Pathfinder 2e class features for core classes. Other releases have systems that are secretly new versions of class features.

Anybody else with me? Any other ok men's of 2nd edition from PF1?


I just got my hard copy of CotWE and since Starfinder came out between it's Kickstarter and release I feel like it's more appropriate for a Starfinder adventure than a Pathfinder one. I'm seeking advice on how to adjust it.

The first change was to have the prelude take place in the Golarion system and adventure 1 take place on Absolom station replacing the Seed of Change with the Starstone. Instead of the Chronicler making a Stargate they instead received a method to go beyond the reach of Absolom's drift travel and go to 4 other galaxies with a Starstone and a drift network as they go through adventures until level 12. The first one being the Aether Galaxy, as per Aethera.

What are good candidates for the three other galaxies?

What Starfinder threats would make good secondary antagonists?

Advice for third party material to make each Galaxy feel fresh? Particularly equipment to replace Pathfinder equipment.

Advice for plots leading to other Galaxy's Starstone/Seeds of Change to take place in new galaxies?


When bringing a race over from Pathfinder, how would you determine racial HP?

Any other obstacles in converting races?


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Before the book is fully out I've been seeing a lot of speculation as to how the Solarion and the Envoy stack up, along with what's working and not, and I wanted to give a little input before we get into the fully swing of class comparison and the roles in Starfinder, especially since half the criticisms seem to be about how efficient of a murderbot classes are and aren't.

I tried running Pathfinder in space for a little over a year and one thing I want to urge people to remember is that the setting change is really relevant. Skill diversity matters as much if not more than skill strength due to the amount of situations that the characters end up needing skills. Even reducing the skill list and making skill ranks easier to come by and spread out there were still gaps left behind because everyone was operating on Pathfinder logic and bad times were had by all. Everyone tried to trick out their combat beasts and many failed to harbor some basic equipment or preparations to handle weird diverse alien monsters and the environment that will likely kill you if you blow up the wrong hull.

I think to further speculation in a useful way we really need to establish what the new paradigm is since we're working with a new setting. For example; diplomacy and social skills are great but maintaining relationships is a whole new level of importance due to corporate ties and increased communication, and in my case required a spreadsheet to keep track of.

I haven't fully absorbed the book so I'll have more meaningful things to say later but for now lets analyze the new status quo while looking at how the new classes and rules stack up so that we can approach the game for being Starfinder, not Pathfinder 2.0.


My order (4359971) has been pending for a while. According to my credit card statement I already got charged which, I IIRC, usually happens when things get shipped. What's the status on this order?


For the past year I've been running a twice monthly game of Pathfinder in a homebrew scifi setting. We've had some ups and downs adjusting the system using third party material to keep it from collapsing but as a whole, things are stable and we're having fun. Since Starfinder was announced my players have asked about talking about the campaign more here since we've been trickling in bits and pieces of what I've seen about Starfinder like makeshifting what I knew about the ship combat rules. This has all be in anticipation of the game transfering from Pathfinder to Starfinder when that comes out.

During this journey we've had a LOT of observations based around dealing with Pathfinder in this context and general feelings about some of the logic behind Pathfinder's lore to a sci-fantasy setting. If you want to know what my experiences have been for the past year, ask away.


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In general I'm a pretty consistent poster and consumer but between a broken computer and job/money issues I haven't been on the boards, gotten new products, delved in rumors or even posted new reviews on my blog.

My last post was in November but really I've been off the wagon since early October. But with a new job and a replaced computer I'm back in action and want to know what's been going on around here.

I'm already on top of Spheres of Might since it came to me through other channels. I'm a big fan of Spheres of Power to the point of gifting it a few times just to make an argument for it's favor so I got there quick.

What third party products since last October are worth checking out?

Have any new publishers appeared?

Has anything particularly exciting happened, like big projects, new turns for existing 3pp subsystems?

Any revivals of old projects like Steampunk Musha?


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In general I'm a pretty consistent poster and consumer but between a broken computer and job/money issues I haven't been on the boards, gotten new products, delved in rumors or even posted new reviews on my blog.

My last post was in November but really I've been off the wagon since early October. But with a new job and a replaced computer I'm back in action and want to know what's been going on around here.

Any new rulings drama that I missed?

Any new martial/caster disparity debacles with new developments?

Have the new classes ruined the game forever?

How have the hardcovers, adventure paths and Player Companion books been?

How many people have we lost to 5e?

What products are worth catching up with and which is more worth letting slide?


Normally I'm GMing, but one person noticed my longing to be on the other side of the screen and is running a game set in Galt (hooray!) but isn't allowing third party products (boooo!).

Since I've gotten used to using third party products to do whatever I want with me being stuck trying to make a concept work with just the Paizo printed stuff I'm a bit at a loss so I need some advice.

1) I wanted to play with the Occult classes since I haven't messed around with those all that much yet and got attached to the idea of mimicking a ghost. I looked towards Spiritualist and Medium but can't really find anything that really sticks with that concept. I thought about a ectoplasmic Spiritualist but its less of getting ghost powers and more about being a goofy magus. I thought the medium would be better to get ghost powers by being possessed by a ghost or even possessing myself, but that's less of ghost powers and more of being a weird version of another class. Normally I'd just build something up with Spheres of Power or have a class from Thunderscape but without that I'm having a hard time finding ways to get be a pseudo-ghost here. How do I be a ghost?

2) What are good themes for Galt character-wise? The exact nature of the campaign is under wraps aside from 'Galt'. I went with being an executioner's son who was ostracized before being mentored by a noble interested in an innate supernatural talent I had but wanted to keep that loose enough to be able to adjust to whatever the theme is. Some sort of vigilante was around my second choice if I fail to make the ghost thing work the way I want it to.

3) Since the ectoplacmic Spiritualist was my first choice, What are good ways to make a strength focused version of it? Without dex to damage it seems not that great to go full on dex with it but I've never made a STR magus.

4) One thing about the medium that possesses themselves, the reanimated medium, I assume the rules mean that you choose a legendary spirit and you just choose that instead of being able to channel multiple spirits.

5) If all else fails I want to wield a chain and do supernatural stuff with it. What are good combat feats/builds for chain wielding with just the paizo rules? related: does the hangman vigilante's abilities work for a chain?


Right now I'm running a game of Pathfinder only, using a bunch of third party material, we're in space. The group goes through a lot of games with about five going on a month and recently one playered claimed that mine was the best current campaign, so I'm proud of it. I'm also doing some one shot adventures with kids and soon I'm playing in a Galt campaign. I have a bunch of books out to see what I wanted to do and once I came to some decisions I started putting my books away, along with some new RPGs I had gotten into while I couldn't play online due to my computer being busted. Here I ran into a problem. I have a shelf for all my Pathfinder hardcovers and Player Companions. After getting back some borrowed stuff this shelf is overstuffed. I went 'fine I'll just take out the hardcover campaign settings and put them on the other shelf with the other Campaign Settings which share a shelf with my APs and modules since these are Golarion-specific.' because I like to stay organized. But, uh oh, this doesn't fit. That's okay I'll just put them on the other shelf that has all my hard copies of third party material. But wait, that doesn't fit because that shelf shares a shelf with my other RPG books. So finally I now have four shelves of RPGs. Three of them Pathfinder. The visuals prompted a long thought process where I had to come to a few decisions about things that have been bugging me lately and so I wound up writing and posting this to my blog.

The short version is that I have a lot of stuff for Pathfinder. A lot of stuff that I like and intend to use but because I don't give access to every book on a given campaign I just don't use it. Plus I'm sure I have at least two grand worth of stuff on my shelves. So I thought, enough's enough. Whatever I want to do that Pathfinder as a system can support I can just do it. I have Ponyfinder, Thunderscape, and Aethera coming soon. I can throw ponies in space with magitech clockwork arms coming out of their backs that shoot lasers and they all fly through Stargates in a TARDIS to fight Galactus (LPJ's Crisis of the World Eater). What else do I really need at this point? Plus Starfinder is coming out which I'm 100% likely to get.

So as a kind of 'begging for a life preserver' gesture I'm asking; Do I just have too much stuff? Is there something to look forward to with Pathfinder where its worth keeping another shelf open?

Now these aren't 'Oh, Pathfinder is too bloated' questions. I like having all these options, and I'm sure as hell not jumping ship by not playing altogether. I just think that I probably have enough. Unless I'm seriously missing something. Some grand niche that is leads to new territory and new kinds of games that the game currently don't support but definitely could. And this is a serious question so I would like some sincere answers and I hope that this can lead to some serious thought about how Pathfinder can extend it's reach by producing more worthwhile material that I could look forward to buying.


I'm at a bit of a wall. I'm starting to seriously get behind in using the Pathfinder material that I have.

When the Advanced Class Guide came out people were crying out 'bloat' but this actually started with the Occult classes. Not that I don't like the Occult classes but the ACG were pretty much different shades of familiar concepts. New options to better do what you've been trying to replicate. But The Occult classes are a bit weirder and have their own book full of new things and since then we have a book on Intrigue and one on Horror with sub rules and new ways to play different types of games. There's a million and one way to play Pathfinder now and a ton of concepts that I want to play but haven't gotten to.

And this is disregarding that finding a group and playing with it is either lengthy or shaky. In most cases a group will fall apart from flaking or people just not having time, some lasting mere weeks before having to shut things down from too few players and not enough communication. When things do get going a campaign can last for about a year maybe more. Curse of the Crimson Throne went by once a week like clockwork and the group grew OP by the last book and finished it within three sessions and even that took almost a year. Rise of the Runelords somehow took months for the first book alone. That's one character and one set of options that has a slot for a year, meanwhile new shiny things are coming out.

So I have to ask, how do you cope with having a lot of options and not enough room to use them?

Alternatively, any advice on how to hustle out some more gameplay? (Note: I have a busted computer and a bunch of more important expenses so online isn't exactly an option.)


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Crossposted in the Starfinder boards because its more relevant there, but;

So in my home game the players are getting involved with large corporations that run things in space. For the most part I'm using Hypercorporations because where else am I going to find a list of corporation for Space Fantasy, and also because these corporations have reach due to hyperspace gates (Har har...). But the players express interest in getting stock from these hypercorporations so that they have an invested interest in being agents and helping them succeed and fail.

What's a good way to simulate stock as currency without it being too much of a hassle?

I was thinking about running a list of per stock values and rolling dice every every week to simulate growth and loss of value using Fudge dice. If the player's actions directly affect a corporation the stock would get positive or negative modifiers. Each company has two enemy companies who get inverse modifiers whenever that company gets modifiers. This is kept track of with a google spreadsheet. The sheet so far lists the company's name, what market they reside, what percentage of the company each stock represents and it's value, expressed in gold multiplier(the number which goes up and down). Effectively its just gold that changes value each session. One problem with this is that I have limited ideas as to how stock works. so I don't know what else it should be doing.

I have mocked up a spreadsheet showing what's going on so far. It was made with numbers at random.

The values are the names of the companies, What space market they're from, the amount of stock that exists, the percentage of the company each stock is worth, the amount of gold each stock is worth, notes on the industry that the company deals in, and the value of the company in gold-pressed chips.


Again, running a space Pathfinder game but because it will inevitably turn into a Starfinder game and would be helpful for developing future things I'm posting it here;

So in my home game the players are getting involved with large corporations that run things in space. These are companies that run research, build biotech, traffic magical components, dispose of waste and so on, but because their reach is throughout space they are huge so my players are interested in buying stock.

Whats a good way to simulate stock as currency without it being too much of a hassle.

I was thinking about running a list of per stock values and rolling dice every every week to simulate growth and loss of value using Fudge dice. If the player's actions directly affect a corporation the stock would get positive or negative modifiers. Each company has two enemy companies who get inverse modifiers whenever that company gets modifiers. This is kept track of with a google spreadsheet. The sheet so far lists the company's name, what market they reside, what percentage of the company each stock represents and it's value, expressed in gold multiplier(the number which goes up and down). Effectively its just gold that changes value each session. One problem with this is that I have limited ideas as to how stock works. so I don't know what else it should be doing.


I made a blog post about how I'm approaching relationships in my 'Pathfinder in Space' campaign that I've been running.

If you're not into clicking the link here's a rundown.

Spoiler:
As a group and as an individual the PCs have a list of groups and individuals that they have relationships with. The relationship is defined by starting attitudes and move according to different actions taken towards them. For an individual you can declare that you want to start a relationship with that NPC followed by a social skill check that influences their starting attitude and also grants a relationship score equal to your Charisma Modifier (minimum 0) With favors (positive actions like gifts, quests, dates, ect) or slights(Negative actions such as attacks, theft and so on) you can increase your influence on that character. Unlike normal Relationship rules, this does not go into the negatives but favors and slights also affect starting attitudes, so if you have a high relationship score with a character that moves from Friendly to Unfriendly the numbers are just as high but the reaction is negative rather than positive. Basically betrayal and redemption is pretty powerful. To develop a relationship you can interact with favors or slights to increase the relationship score to a limit of your level plus your Charisma Modifier. Favors and slights will also change starting attitudes but keep in mind that ignoring them, doing a favor for someone they do not like or making a slight against something that they do like can affect starting attitude as well.

Relationship scores come in tiers that have numerical bonuses.

0 is an acquaintance that doesn't really know or have a greater reason to trust/abhore you.
1-5 represents an Association.
6-11 is a Friendship if their starting attitude is on the positive side of Indifference and Competition on the negative side.
12-30 represents Fellowship/Rivalry.
31 and up represents Devotion/Enmity.

These tiers are grant bonuses or penalties on various rolls equal to their tiers, so 0=0,1-5=2, 6-11=2, 12-30=3, and 31 and up = 4. For example a diplomacy roll against a character with a friendship that is Helpful would have a +2 bonus but this would be a -2 bonus if that same character was Hostile instead of Helpful. So the relationship score is levels of familiarity whereas attitude is the degree of cooperation.

This does not mean that relationship scores don't go down. Anything that causes distance will lower relationship scores like ignoring the NPC or doing something out of character. As such there is an added mechanic 'bond' which represents the principle the relationship is based on and the nature of it. There's no real list for what kind of bonds there can be and they are less mechanically relevant than alignment, but an example can be a bond is Family. You have a familial relationship and hurting other family members or not supporting family can lower relationship scores as they try to distance themselves from you. However the score doesn't lower and rather their attitude changes if you affect them directly with slights like attacking them.

Similar things happen towards groups and organizations only on a much bigger scale and has functions similar to reputation within the organization. Also, while starting relationships is voluntary with individuals any slight or favor towards an organization automatically starts one. To this end most organization relationships will be tracked by the GM.

Additionally collectively or individually PCs can form a special group called a 'crew'. Individually a player can lead a crew of NPCs who's HD is equal to the player's level plus his or her charisma modifier(Max individual HD is level-4). In order to recruit an NPC their relationship with the leader must be higher than their Psych DC (HD+Wis or Sense Motive Bonus). The crew member must also have an attitude of Indifferent, Friendly or Helpful at recruitment. The party can form a crew pooling the HD limit. This forms any sort of ship crew, guild, company and so on. Since this somewhat makes relationships similar to Leadership a lot of the same numbers apply. Things that affect Leadership scores can change attitudes and relationship scores, usually forming slights and favors. Also cohort feats were banned at the beginning of the game so that this system could replace it.

The system itself isn't news to the players but the plan that their amount of allies will matter when they get their first ship will be revealed next week.

Let me know what you think and if there are any problems I'm overlooking and what can be fixed.


I was going to post this over on Pathfinder's forums since I'm running Pathfinder but all things considered this is the better place to ask since at this point I'm less of running Pathfinder and more pre-Starfinder so lets get some practice in now. Anyways I'm seeking advice for something that's happening in my campaign right now. I have a week to sort things out.

Here's what's happening: The players are agents working for Phitch Mining Company because they've had some bad luck and wound up on a backwater mining planet to get on their feet and it's good money. An emergency has happened where the miners at a Noqual mine have encountered a buried star ship of Grey origin. After coming in contact with it, the ship started emitting tachyon energy which is disrupting FTL in the area. Security for the mine tried to handle it but Magnetars and Grick Worms became attracted to the radiation and burrowed into the mine, and worse yet, it seems that some of the Grey experiments have gotten loose. The PC's goal is to clear the mine, shut down whatever's emitting tachyons (likely their FTL drive) and get paid.

One obstacle is that once they got down far enough (took them a few days dealing with repairs and killing monsters in the refinement facility) I hit them with a time warp hazard and they've been affected randomly by slow and haste effects. Apparently something down there is interacting with the tachyons that is affecting time. I threw in some other tidbits in there by making time outside of the mine go faster or slower based on how many people were hit by a slow or haste effect.

So my question: They are at the last leg of this chapter of the adventure where they are now in the ship in question. I plan to have them meet a suspended Flumph who will aid them in stopping whats happening but the time warp hazard isn't quite enough to be truly exciting for the climatic mini-dungeon. What kind of time effects would be good to impose on the party to make the fight with Magnetars and a killer robot more exciting? I thought of doing something meta like having them see themselves from another timeline before those versions disappear or see themselves die to a killer robot and warn them of the robot's weakness before they die, but I'm not sure exactly how to handle that. Any ideas of some scifi shenanigans to do during this final run of the adventure.

They are lvl 4 but they are considerably powerful due to technological items being 10% of the normal price and having automatic bonus progression two steps early.


I made a new blog post about new and trending third party products for Pathfinder.

Like before this is in the context of paizo's top ten downloads from other companies list within their weekly newsletter and from there I take a look at DrivethruRPG and Paizo for new releases that catch my eye and add to either wishlist whatever I find that looks appealing. But I'd also like to hear from you. If there are sources for trending products that you think I should pull from give it a shout out. If you think of any 5th edition products I should be covering let me know. Even let me know if you have things that you are excited for that I'm leaving out. Everything that catches my eye but isn't in my budget yet will be in my DrivethruRPG wishlist on the side bar.


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I've been a huge fan of playing with science fiction in Pathfinder for a while. on my blog I've talked about races, classes, and scifi 3pp on more than one occasion. Because of this I really hope that Starfinder is fully capable of having these elements come in so that I don't have to do any heavy conversion myself or have a set of Pathfinder space rules and a set of Starfinder space rules.

Fortunately from what I hear, Aethera, the recently kickstarted Pathfinder in space book is on board for Starfinder as well as d20pfsrd.com Publishing. Beyond that I've seen some chatter about working closely with 3pp to make sure we have plenty to play with soon after launch.

So lets talk about third party products in Starfinder. What companies do we expect to jump in and produce something. What products that already exist are likely to slap a Starfinder Compatibility logo on their product. What kind of products are you looking forward to? Are you even into buying third party products for Starfinder.


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As the title said, how many of you are already playing Pathfinder in space campaigns?

I've been toying with the idea for a while and have been running a game for the past few months facilitated by third party materials so I'm sure some people were on board ages ago. Talk about your experiences with Starfinder before Starfinder.


This has been on my mind for a while but mechanically lead has frequently had some kind of anti-magical property and a lot of things have some kind of allergy to cold iron, however these aren't really used to protect things from magic. From time to time I've seen anti-magic metals in fiction so I thought about what that would look like in Pathfinder and wanted to talk about and think about the reprecussions of doing such a thing.

The special material I came up with was Soldered Plate. It would be plates of cold iron soldered together in a kind of jigsaw fashion to make weapons and armor that could defend against magical energies.

The common trait of materials like this is that they cannot be enchanted and if applicable can eat up item slots.

Weapons and armor made from soldered plate have the fragile quality. Any items with the broken condition can be repaired within an hour using 100gp of alchemical reagents and a craft check (yet to be determined). They are intricate pieces and thus add 2000gp to the cost and +5 to the DC to craft it.

Damage from soldered plate weapons counts as continual damage for the one round for the purposes of casting spells. This damage does not stack. Ongoing effects and magic items can be dispelled with a sunder attempt. To dispel an effect on an item or creature you must have the Arcane Cleave feat and make a sunder attempt equal to or greater than 11+the spell's caster level. If there are multiple instances of ongoing effects you must target the highest caster level effect first. If successful, that spell ends. If not, compare the same result to the spell with the next highest caster level. Repeat this process until one spell affecting the target ends, or you have failed to sunder every spell. Whether or not you have succeeded, this gives the weapon the broken condition.

Arcane Cleave
Prerequisite: 5 ranks in Spellcraft, BAB +5, Improved Sunder
Benefits: You may attempt to make sunder attempts on ongoing magical effects.

Armor made from soldered plates grant the wearer spell resistance equal to 10+the armor bonus granted by the armor. Shield and armor bonuses stack for this effect. The wearer of any solder plate armor must also make concentration checks to cast spells while wearing the armor.

I'm thinking of a bit more as i go on but let me know what you think about this direction. I'm thinking of anti-scrying masks, a type of antimagic lead poisoning and so on. Is this too good? Is it just bad? does it make spellcasting unfun if a a campaign gets a number of enemies with this kind of stuff?


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I made a new blog post about new and trending third party Pathfinder products.

Like before this is in the context of paizo's top ten downloads from other companies list within their weekly newsletter and from there I take a look at DrivethruRPG and Paizo for new releases that catch my eye and add to either wishlist whatever I find that looks appealing. But I'd also like to hear from you. If there are sources for trending products that you think I should pull from give it a shout out. If you think of any 5th edition products I should be covering let me know. Even let me know if you have things that you are excited for that I'm leaving out. Everything that catches my eye but isn't in my budget yet will be in my DrivethruRPG wishlist on the side bar.


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So recently the primary book for Hypercorp 2099 came out from my Kickstarter rewards, which is nice because a lot of it goes in very well with the scifi campaign I've started to run a few months ago. And it is already starting to affect my campaign in the form of Hypercorporations.

In Hypercorp 2099 hypercorporations are exactly what they sound like. Huge companies that pretty much collectively control everything by having huge fingers into major services and resources. I liked the idea of having a space campaign with a lot of commercialism and weird capitalism so I started alluding to their existence since the beginning of the game, but only recently are the players actively involved with dealing with a hypercorporation and instantly became invested enough where I put it to a vote as to what kind of story they wanted to play;

1, My original concept where they would need to find a macguffin to stop the advance of a planet destroying robot powered by a dyson sphere. A more typical Pathfinder adventure of going on quests planet by planet to stop an ancient evil from coming out, or;

2, Get themselves involved with intrigue between hypercorporations, something that keeps them in civilized space and makes for less exploration and more getting involved with hacking, missions in cities and sabotaging evil hypercorporations.

They almost unanimously wanted option 2, so now I'm thinking of ways to adjust the original story to suit what they want.

Before this point I made it clear that Hypercorporations are a large part of everyday life. Rather than just deal with earth (There is no earth in this setting.) these hypercorporations span the entire galaxy influencing many aspects of space life with their wares. On terrestrial locations their influence is diminished due to it being cheaper to produce and deliver local products so there is much more planetary competition, but in space only the people with money can get anywhere so hypercorporations reign supreme. I filled out a lot with new homebrew Hypercorporations as well as some alluded to in the previews that Legendary Games/Mike Myler has put out. This includes:

Terra Pharma, a homebrew one that one of the players directly work for. and off shoot of Terra Firma these deal with and create biological appliances and weapons. They are the primary maufacturers of many of the pharmaceuticals found in the Technology Guide. Their interests are in new applications of xenobiology but have the foresight to sabotage projects that are deemed too dangerous.

Necromanagement, is from Hypercorps 2099 but has kind of evolved in this campaign. They deal with post-life insurance, capable of lobbying outsiders for preferential treatment in the afterlife, offer safe travel between the material plane and the outer planes which are rife with creatures that devour traveling souls, broker infernal soul dealing, and even offering up resurrection services for a steep price. Their activities alone has driven the price of magical regents to skyrocket even as they become more abundant and will actively sabotage rivaling sources of divine magic.

Safeserve is introduced because I also introduced the concept of the Hypernet. In this context a digital plane of existance that came into being once hyperspace travel became a thing. By sending signals through hyperspace they can bypass the normal limitations of electromagnetic data transfer. This has resulted in entire worlds full of digital constructs and media sharing. But the downside is that in the complex Hypernet plane hackers from across the galaxy can do a lot of damage from the safety of their own home and jacking in can be risky to one's mind especially since the hypernet resides on the same plane as Leng the otherworldly city of madness and other creatures native to the Hypernet. Luckily Safeserve specializes in technologies for surfing the Hypernet in a safe manner. In a Safeserve protected server you are free from the fear of being hacked, killed or even feeling pain as GMs patrol for threats and safeguards are in place to protect you while the rest of the Hypernet has way more freedom at the expense of limited safety With the exception of servers protected by other digital life hypercorporations.

Currently the players are aware of the above hypercorporations as well as R.I.P.E. (also modified to secretly be the front for a Jedi like group of psions), Fawkes Media (They've been getting galactic newsletters as handouts), Biospecs (Bioweapon manufacturer that they managed to piss off already) and Norrasan (The Food distributers that are the makers of Grey Goo [tm] 'Now with flavor!')

With that out of the way, what are some good plot points and prompts to get them into the world of Hypercorporation intrigue for the next ten levels?

Currently they are doing a job on a backwater planet where they will find a macguffin and a trapped R.I.P.E. agent (A Flumph by the name of Pyuut) who wants to take the macguffin back to R.I.P.E.. Originally said macguffin was the part of a complex living processor that essentially was a Wizard A.I. that could stop the Mechamen (Reptoids got taken over by robots they created which basically became the Borg bred with Daleks) from eating the galaxy. They would have to fight Mechamen and agents from hypercorporations that want to get their hands on the wizard AI. Now I'm trying to get away from that and figure out what the macguffin may otherwise be and what plot line to go with so that the players can start with corporate warfare.


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I made a new blog post about new and trending third party Pathfinder products.

Like before this is in the context of paizo's top ten downloads from other companies list within their weekly newsletter and from there I take a look at DrivethruRPG and Paizo for new releases that catch my eye and add to either wishlist whatever I find that looks appealing.


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I made a new blog post about trending third party products.

As before I start off with Paizo's top ten third party downloads found in their newsletter and then start covering new releases and hottest releases from DriveThruRPG.com and Paizo's Newsletters so that you don't miss the new and exciting products as they are coming out.

But I'd also like to hear from you. If there are sources for trending products that you think I should pull from give it a shout out. If you think that I should go ahead and start covering 5th edition products let me know. Even let me know if you have things that you are excited for that I'm leaving out.


Sorry I've been silent for like a week. I have a very inconvenient tree that fell over from a storm and I am now a Comcast customer.

Anyways here is the past weekend's Top Ten summary, as well as products that have caught my attention.


I posted another blog post about the Paizo's top 10 list.

I'm thinking of expanding to third party D&D 5th ed stuff but that means I'll probably have to change the name of these blog posts or make them separate posts.


I posted another report on the top ten list from Paizo's newsletter. As promised I also posted a bit on what's popular on DrivethruRPG and things that caught my attention. Also inside is a preview of Kineticists of Porphyra 3.


I posted a blog about Consolidated Skills and how I modified them for a 'Pathfinder in Space' campaign I'm currently running.

I'd love it if anyone could take a look and make comments, criticisms, praises, new ideas and such. I've talked about this before and ran it in one on one campaigns but this is the first time it's really hitting a group that wasn't prepared for it and so far they haven't had any problems. If fully successful I'm throwing this into more of my campaigns depending on the needs of that campaign.


I posted another breakdown of new products for Pathfinder. I'm still planning to do this every week. This time and for future posts I'll also be looking at things outside the list to see what's new and happenin' round the 3pp world. The reason for this is that the scope of the Paizo top 10s is rather small and I wanted to talk about more than the same products each week.


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I decided to do commentary on the top ten downloads from other companies list that gets sent out every week from paizo. I'm including a short explaination for why it's on the list, whether or not I have it and trends and changes that I notice.

Starting next week I'll also include new products that catch my eye or that I've bought but that is likely to be a monthly thing as my buying rate has slowed down quite a bit.

Anyways, If you'd like, enjoy. Let me know if this kind of article is useful for you and whether or not you'd like me to continue this every week. Also comment anything that I should be doing for this series of posts that I'm not already doing.


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I finally started session zero of my spacefaring campaign.

I'm giving a shout out to the things that were popular at the table.

"Plastic was from Fantastic Technology and effectively is mithril that doesn't adjust the armor category and actually makes the armor cheaper, so rather than make adjustments from Anachronistic Adventures this just made armor better and cheaper by material conversion. It also made melee combat actually possible with a higher variety of weapons which was big for everyone. The technological modifications allowed players to dip deeper into the technological while still having a foot in comfortable and familiar territory.

"I have one class from It Came from the Stars (Starseed), two psionic classes (Soulknife and Psychic Warrior), two from Anachronistic Adventures, (Enforcer and Cogiator), and one from Classes of NeoExodus (The Host). "

Treasury of the Machine also made a bit of a splash for filling in for a few items that were needed but didn't exist yet.

Shout out to Hypercorp 2099, which although isn't actually available yet I was able to incorporate the concept of the Hypernet as a dimensional-based digital world and I lifted the names of a few Hypercorporations as big players in the campaign setting. Not only were these concepts I was able to lift but were big hits as some players even wanted to interact with it as part of their backstories necessitating that everyone start with a comset and a Hypernet modem that connects to wifi hotspots so that some players could upload their adventures to their blog.


Over on my blog I've been making some posts about guns and their roll in my spacefaring campaign. I recently posted about one detail that kind of throws a lot of previous decisions off.

The gist of it is that Gunslinger isn't the only one slinging guns so his exclusive ability to deal dex to damage with firearms makes things difficult to deal with. Dex to damage makes firearms way more dangerous but that's easy to compensate for so the biggest problem is that the gunslinger is the only one that can do it. With guns being martial weapons in this campaign it's easy enough to use them but that dex to damage is way too valuable to pass up forcing anyone that would want to do this to dip into gunslinger since everyone would want to use a firearm and I don't want Gunslinger to be the only class that does this if everyone is using firearms.

For this reason when my players meet for the session zero tomorrow I'm letting them discuss and then vote on three options.

1. Ban Gunslinger. This eliminates the problem altogether and I don't have to change anything. Although despite the advantages of firearms using rapid shot with them and using automatic mode is still -4 to each shot so they may actually come out relatively weak considering that technology makes melee combat pretty dangerous and the ability to avoid touch attacks is greatly increased.

2. Change how firearms work. One thing that I do for steampunky games is to make firearms lose the touch attacks and misfire and instead naturally deal dex to damage. Gunslinger gets Gun Training but its a +1 competence bonus at first level and every four levels after. This still results in me not needing to do anything to compensate for touch attacks being a major thing. However this makes some abilities and items useless like bulletproofing, scatterlight armor and the Avoidance feat chain.

3. Make Gun Training a combat feat, prerequisite +1 BAB and 13 Dex. This is the most extreme in terms of compensating but it's not impossible. In situations like this I add creatures' Natural Armor to their touch AC against firearms or as DR through the use of third party templates. Or in some cases just adding more monsters. It also can prove to be pretty lethal to players as They have to account for NPCs with firearms dealing a lot of damage to them without bonus HP to compensate. This makes touch AC very vital and although there is enough defenses to go around this will eat up equipment, feats or class features.

So tell me, what would you choose and why and if there are any better solutions that you can think of?


Hey guys, I saw over on reddit an announcement that Curse of the Crimson Throne is getting a hardcover.

Last I heard was that the 3.5 APs weren't getting a RotRL treatment. Is this a rumor or is it real? Whats the real deal?

Picture of supposed evidence.


This question has been nagging my mind since I first started playing RPGs; Exactly who's responsibility is it for a player to know how to play the game?

I know that the GM is generally responsible for being the final arbiter of how the rules play out in a campaign so they are responsible for enforcing whatever rules are in play including house rules and what books to use, but what about knowing how to play in the first place?

Is the GM charged with rule education? If a GM starts a game does that GM need to consider running a tutorial so that the campaign goes smoothly?

If there are mixed levels of experience at the table should there be assuptions of sessions of remedial education that is voluntary on the part of experienced players?

If a player is handed a Core Rulebook and Strategy Guide a week or two in advance and has not further input from the other players or GM is it reasonable to expect that player to have a functioning(not necessarily optimized) character and general knowledge of what it can do?

In some cases I've seen plenty of players that are multiple sessions and even multiple campaigns into the game that have trouble calculating Power Attack or foresight to have more than 10 in their casting stat unless the GM specifically instructs and oversees the character creation process on a step by step basis, so GM responsibility seems desirable but should it be expected?

What about cases where the GM and the players are new to the game and GM goes through the process of learning the game in order to GM, should that GM also be burdened with teaching the rest of the players in turn? Who is responsible for teaching the GM or is the GM responsible for teaching herself in situations like that?

I'd like to know the forums point of view on the concept of learning the game and who is responsible for teaching. This isn't for a specific problem I'm facing so this is just a general thought to apply to a number of situations.


I'm currently working on something that came about as a result of realizing that I have a lot of pdfs of technomancers and artificers for Pathfinder. So I wanted to ask around to see if I had them all because I wanted to make tournament style review and poll rounds to sort out fan favorites allowing new customers to better figure out what they would buy.

At the moment they'll come in three divisions. Artificers; classes that create magical objects as a central part of their class features. Tinkerers: Classes that create non-magical objects as a central part of their class features. Technologists: Same as Tinkerers but more of a modern/future slant. This is mostly to make it easier to discover and purchase products taht represent a customer's needs and the division between magic, non-magic, and space age are the more obvious trope clusters.

I'm only looking at things that are up for purchase on Paizo's store, full 20 level base classes and have representing a technomancer or artificer as it's original flavor and goal.

So my questions here are;

1) What is your favorite Technomancer class?

2) What tropes and themes do you expect out of your technomancer?

3) Do you prefer your mechanics to be simple or complex?


Looking for recruits for a Pathfinder game being held in Downtown or North Berkeley California.

The exact time is negotiable with the group but it is to start after or on February 27th. and will have a session every other week.

The campaign will be set mostly in space so there will be liberal use of third party material to facilitate the pulp sci-fi setting. This includes but not limited to Ultimate Psionics, Anachronistic Adventures, and Neoexodus.


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So I made a blog post about something that I'm doing soon. So you don't have to click on the link here is the primary message.

"I've been planning and delaying this campaign for a while but I'm finally doing it now that I feel that I have enough material to do it justice. What I'm talking about is a long term Sci-Fi campaign using Pathfinder that I've titled "The Infinity Matrix" (It makes sense in the context of the campaign). Beforehand I've been running skirmishes and one shots using Sci-Fi material but I never had enough consistent players that were interested but now, starting February 21st, I'm running it.

... my reviews will be heavily biased towards Sci-Fi and Space-based third party products for Pathfinder. Of course I'll be continuing with requests and new things that I pick up, but in between those I'll be reviewing things with a science fiction slant starting tomorrow with Book of Heroic Races: Advanced Androids from Jon Brazer Enterprises until February 21st... Hopefully by the time I'm done I'll be able to also cover some of the material that I've been anticipating, like Aethera and Conquest of the Universe.

Not only that but I'll share adventure details, setting details, house rules, stat blocks and third party considerations that I'll be using for the campaign..."

What I need for you guys is this: If you have or know of any third party material I should cover for my month+ of Sci-Fi madness post below and let me know. Within my budget I'll go out and get it if I don't have it already. Also hit me up for your personal preference for third party spaceship rules as that has been a big obstacle. Eventually I'll be writing comparisons of spaceship rules to sort out what I want to use. This includes things based on technological equipment, classes with a sci-fi or space bent, campaign settings, bestiaries, posted home brew material or anything else that facilitates space travel or adventures in a technological future. I need a lot of material to write about.


Normally I'd post this in the Third Party Product section but I think this effects a lot of us. I wrote an article over on my blog about what I call 'The Buy-In Dilemma'. So that you don't have to click on the link, the gist of it is that with a ton of books and especially with a ton of 3pp books there comes a point where moving away from Pathfinder or even moving to a new edition becomes less and less practical even if it was desirable. In the article I speak from the perspective of someone who has a lot of third party material and how they contribute to obsoleting reasons to get into a new edition but here I want to speak from the perspective of just the amount of books that Paizo puts out.

Does the amount of material make a new game or new edition less desirable or practical for you? I know that the answer is different for players that rely solely on d20pfsrd and have no third party material purchases but even then there is time invested in making the game work for you.

Does the game feel like it slowly solves it's own problems as more material is released? I know I got a lot out of Pathfinder Unchained, The Weapon Master's Handbook. I personally feel like the game shifts itself as time goes on.

Does the existence of the Beginner Box and the Strategy Guide contribute to making a new incompatible edition less useful by lowering the barrier of entry?

How do you feel about this 'dilemma' and are you okay with it?

Do you limit which books you use based on your campaign or the experience of your table?

How do you feel about this in regards to Pathfinder Society?


So this isn't Pathfinder but 5e, but the same applies here aside from the Paladin being Chaotic Good. We're even playing Kingmaker.

I'm a fighter in a group with a Rogue, Wizard, Paladin(Kord), Monk and Cleric(Kord). I don't stress too much about alignment so I don't know much about everyone else' alignment other than I think only the Monk is lawful in any way. But I decided to play with alignment by being a Lawful Evil character who is under a love spell so insists on being Lawful Good, or at least as far as he understands it. Its supposed to be a fun little thing where he's obviously playing against his nature but honestly tries to do the right thing. He's even one of the main characters that is not drinking or flirting and gave 60% of his gold to start an orphanage/school.

Now my companions are generally good enough with a few hiccups that would make my character being evil result in betrayal and death because he doesn't actually like them. But two recent events have me on edge. The first one is that the Paladin decided to replace his eye with an obviously evil jewel that we got from a lich. Low will saves caused about half of this decision. More recently we had some prisoners from an attack and were discussing what to do with them. Of course once they're captured I'm not into torturing them or blatantly executing them when they are pretty much mercenaries doing their jobs. So the Rogue convinces me to take care of a princess-type NPC to make sure she was okay and find out what we need to save her father. Then proceeded to torture and murder the prisoners. When I got back they said the prisoners tried to escape and were killed after they had gotten their hands on weapons. Low wisdom and sense motive lets this slide as a character but as a player I'm wondering if I need to roll up a new character for this group. One that's a little more liberal with the prospect of torture, glory seeking and a little assassination/murder.


So here's the story; I'm GMing for four kids that are around 9 years old. Because they're beginners I went through Black Fang's Dungeon from the Beginner Box. We were short on time and they were losing the fight against Blackfang so I had the Goblin Bard they befriended use an item to turn them into goblins so they could escape through the small tunnels.

We then played We Be Goblins only instead of searching for fireworks they were searching for a magic item that could turn them back into humans and they had joined the Fatmouth Tribe instead of the Licktoads. Once they had the thing, however, they decided that they didn't want to change back and wanted to stay Goblins.

All the material I have from there is We Be Goblins Too.

Are there any other goblin-friendly adventures out there or am I better off homebrewing something?

Any advice on what kind of adventures goblins should be facing? I think the biggest appeal of them being goblins is the 'gak factor' (The early 90's approach of appealing to kids through 'Gross=Fun'. y'know the way that burps and pickled rats are entertaining because adults can't see the taste of Cinnamon Toast Crunch.) so Its unlikely that I'd have the same success if the goblins just behaved like normal adventurers.


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I'm sick so I haven't been posting to my blog lately but I managed to get out my fever-induced ramblings about 3pp products and balance.

Tell me what you think. Am I right? Is there something I should have added? Is this kind of article something you'd like to see more of?


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As you may or may not know, I have a blog running about 3pp material for Pathfinder. To some extent its meant to be a place for my reviews to show up, but I wanted to post articles of various types within the realm of third party material, but I wanted to ask publishers if certain things are okay to put in my articles.

One thing was explaining or even writing down crunch. More specifically I was working on articles where I post an NPC that is built with third party material and explain the abilities that it has. For example, I'm planning a game where the PCs run into a character that is a level 6 Dread from Ultimate Psionics and is wielding a beam sword from Rite Publishing's Treasury of the Machine. I also go in depth about how the NPC works to showcase what the third party crunch does to make this character and why I chose the crunch I did to make the NPC. Another scenario is building a monster using third party templates and explaining what I used and where it was from. A third example is cases where I use crunch in unconventional ways and post a feat or ability that I'm using as an example of what I'm doing. Basically these are instances of quoting crunch to explain what I'm doing.

In some cases this is more extreme as I thought about posting my homebrew adventures, which would heavily feature creatures, equipment, and NPCs piecemealed from more than one source and explanations of whats happening with the stats and what books I'm using. This includes house rules on some products.

Another thing was logs, written or audio, with spoiler tags that describe gameplay of third party adventures. For example say I recorded a session of the Santiago adventure and posted it (with spoiler tags).

So how much of this is okay to post and how much is definitely not cool?


So I'm having a bit of trouble.

I use a lot of third party things so I mostly deal with manually imputing information into things. So when I start from scratch with a monster or NPC and I want to simplify it into a stat block to print it out or save it I have to manually input and organize it all over again. When it comes to first party options with monsters and NPCs I can easily use Dinglesgames but its more valuable that there is a condensed stat block rather than it building the creature for me. Anybody know of any program or character sheet where I can work on a character, (manually so that it doesn't choke on 3pp material) and condenses the information into a stat block that I can copy-paste somewhere? Its rather tedious but to have to rewrite out things when working on new monsters. Also my googling has turned up nothing on that front.


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A couple of months ago my wife tried to convince me to start a patreon for fantasy art. I don't think I'm very good so I didn't. She also suggested that I make one in regards to reviewing third party Pathfinder products. I don't think my reviews are 'bad' but so far I mostly write feelings based on what I find important rather than go on a point-by-point analysis going over each subsection of a pdf. In the end I put it off in favor of making a blog specifically about reviews and 3pp musings.

But recent events have me a bit more optimistic about reviewing more and being less shy about my content. College is ending for me soon and by 2017 I'll be dealing with livestock on a much larger scale. Despite the hard labor livestock takes up less time than homework so I'll have more free time on my hands. I've also been offered money for GMing Pathfinder games twice so far recently so that free time seems to be going to Pathfinder anyway.

If I were to start a Patreon, since I'm not exactly broke, the money would likely go to setting up a secondary gaming group(third weekly gaming group) for third party material. This means giving them pizzas, drinks, and minis, and would also supply the group with third party materials for me to write about. If I get a lot of support this means more home made dishes I like to make, like home made pizza, peanut curry, stuffed mushrooms, and meat tarts, and I can set up more kids groups at the local game store I work at. Depending on the support I can probably afford to record and post audio of the sessions so people can see (figuratively) firsthand how some 3pp material plays out. I'd also be able to afford reviewing and articles a daily thing. This means that I'd be posting a review a day along with an article about a random 3pp subject. I'd also post free use fantasy art depending on the level of support for it on the patreon. If you want to judge how worthwhile that would be, here is my old deviantart page. I don't scan my recent work because its much bigger than the scanner, but my general quality hasn't changed much.

This is something that won't happen until after Christmas if it does happen.

So TL;DR: I'm thinking of making a patreon for my Pathfinder blog. I'm a bit gun shy about it so I'm asking for opinions to figure out if this is a worthwhile venture. To make this a bit easier, here is a straw poll.


I made a new blog review about ARMR's Zephyrus the first of their free classes. I have more reviews written about the rest of the classes that I'll post up in the following weeks but for now I think this one is one of the all stars of the group being a blast to play and the fact that it's an interesting play-style martial.

It's free so you can check it out and judge for yourself.


I need some advice on how to deal with firearms in an upcoming scifi campaign.

Normally with early firearms I have no problem with the rules as-is. With post renaissance dungeonpunk campaigns I make firearms deal dex to damage instead of hitting touch AC and misfire is gone. But futuristic weapons are getting problematic for several reasons.

Firstly, with third party involved there are actually a lot of ways for PCs to deal with the touch AC. This becomes a bit of an issue because the game starts becoming a rock paper scissor game between melee, energy and ballistic weapons.

Armor defends very little against ballistic and energy weapons. Scatterlight suits cap at +9 with a shield bringing that up by +2. There are third party armors that don't take touch attacks from ballistc but they do for weapons. Energy weapons are easy to shield in other ways because energy resistance isn't hard to come by, such as the HEV suit.

Combat Expertise can be very useful, and between third party things there are two feat lines that boost dex bonus to AC capping at +7 over two feats or +12 over three feats. But since this counts towards your max dex bonus your armor options are limited. Plus you have to spend feats to do it which is a precious resource.

I could make firearms deal dex to damage instead of target touch AC but it makes a little less sense with energy weapons. Also it defuncts several items that specifically deal with firearms targeting touch AC and also makes ballistic weapons extremely powerful as they hit harder.

What is a good way to keep this balanced out? I'm not too concerned about Monsters getting heavily killed, as a large mob of monsters is more exciting that one big one.


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I posted a new blog article today listing my top 10 3pp products that need 'more'. Yes these products are good but there's way too much potential to be 'gooder'.

So tell me what you think. What 3pp products made you go "YES!! This is just what I need!" but later had you wanting more? Doesn't matter if you actually need more or you're just greedy and want an expansion. Just that you want more.

And developers; Is there any more coming from any popular product you've had?

Short version of my list:

10. Culinary Magic
9. Book of Martial Action
8. Fantastic Technology
7. Feats of Runic Might
6. Way of Ki
5. Fighter Nuances
4. A Fistful of Denarii
3. ARMR stuff
2. Mystical: Kingdom of Monsters
1. Anachronistic Adventures

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