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Senior Designer. Organized Play Member. 870 posts. No reviews. No lists. No wishlists.


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Senior Designer

Slamy Mcbiteo wrote:
What material are the tiles made out of? The same as the flip maps or the card stock of the Map packs? I agree they look very useful just hoping they are sturdy

It's a similar material to both the Flip-Mats and the Map Packs, so they are as sturdy as either of those products.

Senior Designer

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Just to pipe in and agree with what Mark said, keep in mind that we are reading and digesting all the bits of feedback we get from here and other sources. During the website issues, I was active on a Facebook group of players answering rules questions when I could and such. Other folks at Paizo were scouring the internet for other areas where playtest discussions were occurring, listening, and being helpful when we had the time.

In my mind, this is the point where we do the most listening. We listen to you here (and on other forums when we have the bandwidth) and through surveys. I talked to a good amount of folks (though much, much smaller than the set here) at PAX West this weekend. Even then I did more listening than talking.

While we tend to share our opinions and observations in blogs and on Twitch, coming into the various threads here and doing that is often not the best way to disseminate such information and sometimes can be counterproductive. Small notes can be seen as dismissive and longer ones often get misinterpreted as argumentative. That said, Mark does an amazing job of posting here. The man's a trooper.

In short, if we don't respond to your post or thread, you can still bet that at least one person from the team has read it (and usually many folks on the team did) and we are discussing any issues that come up from that discussion.

Senior Designer

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velwein wrote:
Overly complicated, while I've played my fair share of rpgs. New players might look at all these options and be overwhelmed. There is so much to choose from, that and when you add supplements?

Actually, one of the goals is to simplify these options in some way. Take a look at P1 now. Not only does it have an abundance of options that can be overwhelming to new players there are more silos for those options.

Personally, I have found that newer players have no problem with the current range of silos and find it much easier to navigate them than the current mix of feats, racial traits, talents, powers, spell-like abilities, traits (and the various sub-categories of those), exploits, evolutions, mysteries, and so on.

Of course, my observations, while broad, are anecdotal, and hence the reason why we are doing this playtest. Thank you very much for the feedback. It is appreciated.

Senior Designer

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While this is a playtest and we are evaluating everything, I think it's a pretty safe bet that we will not be removing classes from the game.

Senior Designer

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Kerobelis wrote:
Third attacks (with the -10 penalty) will often require more than a 20 roll. So in this case when a natural 20 is rolled, it is a hit and not a critical hit?

That is a good point. Your third or subsequent hits will crit less due to the multiple attack penalty. If you roll a 20 and that would not normally hit due to those (and other) penalties, it would be a normal hit and not a critical hit.

Senior Designer

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Both are correct, but the second is more correct. What the first section is missing is "if you succeeded and rolled a 20 on the die" If a 20 would not normally succeed for you, which is extremely rare and usually outside the typical benchmarks of encounter or challenge design, but you roll a 20 on the die, it would be a success rather than a critical success.

Senior Designer

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EJDean wrote:
So far, all of the blog posts have to a greater or lesser extent been written as marketing pieces designed to build hype and preview content. That's fine before the release of the rules, but now that they're out, what we really need is open and honest communication from the designers.

I would start by going back and reading those initial blogs with fresh eyes. Between the blogs and various interviews done by members of the design team since January (I've done half a dozen), I think we have been very open and honest about the design intent of the Playtest's design. The pieces are there and in abundance.

Senior Designer

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Terevalis Unctio of House Mysti wrote:
Can we pick lower level class or racial feats if we dont like the options higher levels give?

Yes.

Senior Designer

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orphias wrote:
Supposedly it also stops magic missile if raised - But what idiot would cast magic missile at the caster after he sees you cast shield ?

Well, in these cases it does a better job of stopping the use of magic missile against the caster. Sometimes just the knowledge of a defense provides a better defense to the user of that defense.

This has been the case throughout the history of strategy.

Senior Designer

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Doktor Weasel wrote:
Is there an ETA on the Errata document? I can understand GenCon might have delayed things a bit, but the sooner we can get it and implement it into our playtest games the better.

As soon as we can reasonably get it through the full process and get it to you. Gen Con is slowing us down. Not everyone is back from that show yet and it takes some time to ramp things up when folks do get back.

We just ask for a little patience. It will not be long (but may be a tad longer than you would like).

Senior Designer

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Secret Wizard wrote:
Great to hear, would also be nice to know what type of interaction we'll be getting with the developers through the playtest!

We will be posting here and sometimes in other forums as well as providing larger blog updates, Twitch Friday events, and so on. We will not be giving our or home phone numbers nor conducting home visits. ;)

Senior Designer

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Fumarole wrote:
Will the surveys be available for us to take after the targeted play window? My group will only be meeting every other week starting next weekend, so the timing will be close.

Yes. The surveys will stay up after the playtest window. No worries there.

Senior Designer

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AndIMustMask wrote:
i hope this trhead survives until the devs are back from gencon, so they can read and think on this thread!

Even if it doesn't survive on your end because posts get removed for various reasons, we can still read it. That's one of the perks of being "devs."

We are reading. To be honest most of the errata issues brought up here and there on this post an others are already in our errata document. Stay tuned, all, and thank you for participating so far in the playtest. It is greatly appreciated.

Senior Designer

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Nekome wrote:
Stephen Radney-MacFarland wrote:
I think in this situation you would take a "kidnapped by pirates" background, and just have the farming part in the story background. Look at them is your most formative experience.
And is there going to be a "kidnapped by pirates" or "escaped slave" background available?

Depending on how the Playtest progresses, I think you can count on it. There are many possible backgrounds we can design that are either general or specially geared toward Adventure Paths or other adventure formats.

Senior Designer

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Nekome wrote:
Consider this for a rogue's background: He was born on a farm and expected to help out from an early age, but he was a total slacker and sometimes put even more energy into avoiding his chores than doing them. He ran off to the nearest city, but was unprepared to survive there and quickly found himself kidnapped to fill out the crew on a pirate ship.

I think in this situation you would take a "kidnapped by pirates" background, and just have the farming part in the story background. Look at them is your most formative experience.

Senior Designer

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CorvusMask wrote:
Its mostly action, but its really cool flavored action scenes and moments and set pieces and thing I'm really impressed with is amount of named cultists who have strong personality you have chance to show off. It kind of feels like some sort of movie scene at times.

Fantastic! That was definitely my goal when writing it. I hope you enjoy playing it.

Senior Designer

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I'm just going to leave this here...

I have a straightforward rule for online interactions. Don't say anything you wouldn't say to that person's face. It's served me well.

I (and many of the folks at Paizo) have thick skin. I'm pretty well known for having a higher than average tolerance for jerky behavior and being a free speech advocate. That said, when you punctuate a point with what can be considered a mean-spirited punchline to garner a virtual chuckle or perceived applause from your messageboards peers, you hazard alienating a person to the point where no matter what you say, they are disposed not to listen.

I've seen this again and again, and have even engaged in the behavior more than I would like to admit. Just something to keep in mind and maybe also share if you're so inclined.

Senior Designer

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Twisted Crow wrote:
brad2411 wrote:
Stephen Radney-MacFarland wrote:
brad2411 wrote:
Also you talk about 2 articles but there are more then 2 articles on the alchemist and once again I will state that they have talked about the Alchemist in almost everything we have seen them do from playtests to interviews.

Part of that issue may be because there are two blog posts, other folks in game journalism have *wanted* to talk about the alchemist. As far as interviews and such go, I've been on a few of them, but I'm as likely to talk about action economy, my love of black and white art (though I admit it might be nostalgia) and Shadow of the Demon Lord as I am about Alchemy.

Shadow of the Demon Lord, yes please!!

Off topic, but I'm excited to see shout-outs to this system (and that a designer with Paizo wrote some support content). I fell in love with the rule simplifications, character progression, and default setting fluff. After a one-off test session several weeks ago I'm finally starting a full campaign with it - excited to see how it plays out.

This thread has gone off topic lots of times, so one more will not hurt.

SotDL is great. It's designer, Rob Schwalb, is a good friend of mine. I got to see the book in all its iterations up to its release, and I've been happy to contribute to its expansion multiple times (and will do so again).

Rob and I worked with each other during my stint at Wizards of the Coast, and we quickly realized that we were kindred spirits in many ways, but mostly when it comes to game design. When I went to Paizo and he started working on 5e, we would still get together and talk design philosophy, but in a very general sense (NDAs and all). From those talks came some glimmers of what would become Shadow of the Demon Lord, a game I'm working on whenever I can squirrel away some free time, and some of the design in the Pathfinder Playtest.

I hope you enjoy your campaign.

Senior Designer

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brad2411 wrote:
Also you talk about 2 articles but there are more then 2 articles on the alchemist and once again I will state that they have talked about the Alchemist in almost everything we have seen them do from playtests to interviews.

Part of that issue may be because there are two blog posts, other folks in game journalism have *wanted* to talk about the alchemist. As far as interviews and such go, I've been on a few of them, but I'm as likely to talk about action economy, my love of black and white art (though I admit it might be nostalgia) and Shadow of the Demon Lord as I am about Alchemy.

Senior Designer

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OCEANSHIELDWOLPF 2.0 wrote:
I think you quoted me instead of the OP by mistake Stephen...

Yeah, I trimmed in the wrong place there. It was the weekend. ;)

That said, I don't think anyone misunderstood what I was responding to, and for those who did my apologies.

I would add that IMO the long back and forth about bias (and we all have them), while an interesting aside, may seem like a strange and somewhat long back and forth for those coming to the forums looking for information and discussion about the story at hand. It's easy to digress, but do me a favor and try to avoid such lengthy digressions when possible.

Feelings are more likely to get hurt, which sparks aggressive comments, which brings in the moderators. The moderators have a hard enough job. I know I may just be spitting into the wind, but I would like to try and make this process as easier on them as we possibly can.

Senior Designer

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OCEANSHIELDWOLPF 2.0 wrote:
But it is going to be a core class. And Alchemy is coming front and centre for anyone with the Craft-ability. I think it's bold, but not terrifying. If PF2 wants to grab some niche with a little Alchemipunk and Goblinry, so what? Neither are my favourite part of fantasy, but I like a little razzle-dazzle, and this seems razzle-dazzle with a purpose rather than style over substance for its own sake.

So, funny story, you were at one point going to get a bunch of alchemist information in more rapid succession. After I wrote the alchemist blog, we are going to do the alchemical items blog later that week. Because Tech Raptor was keen on doing a story about alchemy that same week, I argued to give the alchemy blog a bit of space, and we did the blog on gnomes and halflings later on in the week.

In short, we have a list of topics to cover as we approach the release. That list was made months ago, but we change things up every so often in the attempts to split up topics, so you're not getting "too much of a good thing" in quick succession. Obviously, you believe we missed the mark this time, but it had nothing to do with dev bias. If anything we spaced it out a little more than we were first planning to because of interest from outside groups about the subject.

Senior Designer

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RangerWickett wrote:

I was hoping for tripwires, landmines, and stuff like that. Maybe it's my old like of 4e, where you could set up a hazard and have your buddy shove an enemy into it.

Still, this is cool.

I'm sure we will eventually get there, but for right now we are going to cover the basics. Once we have a groundwork for alchemy, we'll get to the crazy mad scientist/engineer type stuff.

Senior Designer

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Gregg Reece wrote:
Mark Seifter wrote:
*You might have to send us cookies. Paizo's address is on the contact us page ;)
Don't tempt us. I sent a bottle of whiskey to the customer service department this past Friday. I figured they needed it.

That is awesome! They might not need it, but they do deserve it.

You're a hero.

Senior Designer

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RumpinRufus wrote:

Congratulations! We've taken a thread that had the active engagement of four Paizo employees, and turned it into a flame war.

... this is why we can't have nice things ...

It's not so bad. People love Pathfinder. It means a lot to them. Sometimes things get heated. I wish that folks would not treat dissenting opinions as a threat, but unfortunately, that's not how the internet seems to work.

In the end, I'm happy that folks are sharing their opinions. It's what we want, after all.

Senior Designer

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Vic Wertz wrote:
Owen K. C. Stephens wrote:
And a LOT of other Paizo employees pitched in--the credits for that book's "Authors" is lengthy for a reason.
Even people whose names are not listed under things like author, designer, developer, or editor contribute. I heard that the design team took a suggestion from Cosmo the other day. COSMO!

Even Cosmo!

We actually do a great deal of listening to everyone around us. The reason we are doing this playtest is to put the thing out there and get information that will inform the design of the final game. Every post, every survey, every instant of play gives us more information toward making the best game possible--which is our only motivation, our one and only goal.

What are we willing to redesign? Anything that doesn't work toward that goal. Period.

Senior Designer

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Well, that is the goal.

Senior Designer

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Darksol the Painbringer wrote:
]True Evil is not so primitive, after all...

You do evil your way, and I'll do it my way. I find the visceral approach to be the most terrifying. Mileage may vary. ;)

Senior Designer

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Ensign 5th Account wrote:

How do I learn more?

Expected the tenderizing part.

Step into this magically prepared circle. Don't mind the flames. It'll not hurt a bit. And "by not hurt a bit," I mean it's going to be endlessly agonizing for both your body and soul. Such is the fate of the foolishly curious.

Senior Designer

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Darksol the Painbringer wrote:
Does he wield the almighty Pork Slayer blade and Pig Sticker dagger, +3 Flaming Swine Bane weapons that grant a +5 competence bonus to Profession [Cook] when cooking pigs, and when used together double the bonus and allow the wielder to, once per day, Take 20 on any main dish involving pork (such as bacon, sausage, or chops), even while distracted?

I need no special tools to kill swine, fool! Dark powers have granted me to extract bacon with my bare hands if need be. Sometimes I even cook it when I'm done.

Senior Designer

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Thanks for everyone's feedback. We have a numbering scheme for these that will allow you to gain set and tile information at a glance as unobtrusively as possible.

I'll give details about this and other aspects of Flip-Tiles (including some details on the second Starter Set) in an upcoming Paizo blog.

Senior Designer

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The iconic antipaladin is named Stephen. He's charming, funny, roguishly handsome and he works at Paizo. That's all you need to know. That's all he wants you to know. If you learn more, he would have to track you down and kill you.

Oh, that and he likes to kick pigs. It tenderizes the delicious meat.

Hail!

Senior Designer

Zi Mishkal wrote:
Stephen Radney-MacFarland wrote:
Snorter wrote:
Will these be the same thickness and material as the existing map packs?
Similar thickness if not the same, yes.
How thick is that?

I don't have the exact measurement; it's a thin piece of cardstock with lamination on one side. I believe these will be the same material, laminated on both. Not as thick as a game board.

Senior Designer

Snorter wrote:
Will these be the same thickness and material as the existing map packs?

Similar thickness if not the same, yes.

Senior Designer

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ckdragons wrote:
Do the squares not line up with the edge of the tiles? The picture show there is a spacing between the square line and the edge. This would make it difficult to place them edge-to-edge. Or did the designer expect us to have the tiles placed overlapping each other?

The mock-up on this page looks like it is using the tiles with the full bleed. When Jason Engle creates the art for tiles, he always leaves a bleed which helps to create nice snug tiles during the manufacturing (i.e., no dead space at the edges).

The final tiles will line up fine, just like the old Map Pack tiles do.

Senior Designer

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Fumarole wrote:
Will the Starter Set box be large enough to accommodate an expansion pack or two? Please make this the case as it would make storing and transporting them very convenient.

Probably not (I have not seen a physical prototype yet). Leaving a lot of space in these kinds of cartons can create shipping issues. But each comes in its own snug carton. Of course, the starter sets are larger, so you could grab your tiles from wherever sets you want for your game, put them in the bigger box and head to your game.

Senior Designer

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Hmm wrote:

I have a question, and that is about slippage. One of the reasons that I don’t enjoy using map packs at conventions is that the cards slip around. I can correct this a bit by putting a vinyl map under them, and a clear vinyl sheet over them. Still... how slippery are these new tiles?

Hmm

Well, they are going to be slippery. That's the nature of having them accommodate various types of markers. We just can't change physics. But I did notice some folks solutions to limit slippage, check them out.

When I use them, I use a bit of scotch tape to connect the tiles. I can fold some tiles under others in some instances, and change the map with little fuss. The larger play space also has the benefit of limiting slippage.

Senior Designer

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Neume wrote:

What CrystalSeas said!

This is so flippin' amazeballs! but yeah having a way to identify each face would be awesomesauce.

Yes. We are working on a couple of solutions for an identification scheme. We want these things to be as easy to use and reuse as possible.

I'll be writing another blog in the next month or so about these products, so I will make sure and outline how we've decided to do it.

Great suggestions! Thank you.

Senior Designer

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Redelia wrote:

Can anyone with inside information tell me if this is likely to be child appropriate? Before the campaign setting stuff started leaking over, every rules hardcover other than occult adventures, horror adventures, and bestiary 6 was OK, but much of the campaign setting stuff is not. (i.e. if it mentions Lamashtu or Zon Kuthon, it's not OK) My son would adore this book based on his favorite classes, but I don't want to buy it as a gift for him and then find it's not OK.

edit: If I have to, I can wait for it to come out and buy the PDF to preview it, but it would be better to get it as a subscription item.

Of course, the best way to find out is to take a gander before you buy it. I I don't fully know what your standards are for your child, but given what you've said on the subject, I think you will find this book suitable for your son.

I don't believe it mentions either Lamashtu or Zon Kuthon, or if it does Lamashtu may be mentioned in passing within an archetype description or its relations with the Green Faith. It adheres much more to the format and the tone of other books in the Ultimate line. If you judged those books suitable, there's a good bet you'll judge this one suitable too.

Senior Designer

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Xenocrat wrote:
That's the same mutant Cabbage Patch head as the high priestess of Iomedae in Hell Comes to Westcrown. I'll say this for the artist, they have a distinctive style.

Also, realize that this is not the final art.

Senior Designer

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Xenocrat wrote:
The Hellknights need a dietician.

You tell him that. You may just be the next plate on his menu.

Designer

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moon-beast wrote:

I'm confused. Is this one same mansion that is portrayed on both (flip) sides?

Or do we get two separate mansions, one on each side?

It is the same mansion. As the product description states, one side is the ground floor and the second side has both the second floor and the attic.

Designer

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Millefune wrote:
Is this keep going to have bathrooms/privies in it this time?

Nope...use chamber pots and throw it over the walls. It was good enough for my great, great, great, great, great, great grandfather. It'll be good enough for you (and your NPCs).

Designer

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kevin bienhoff wrote:
Keep up the GREAT WORK and I'll keep purchasing those maps!

Awww. Thanks, man. I will do my best. I think many of you will like what is coming. Exciting times on the map front.

Designer

Shineonu wrote:
The first side looks great! The second? Nope...what is that blue weirdness? Are those clouds, or gas? Not liking it much, sorry.

I sort of envisioned them as misty extradimensional boundaries. I'm glad you like the other side.

Designer

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Brontoceratops wrote:

Another tragic entry, alas!

Four tiles wasted on a gigantic fountain no "village" would have. One or two tiles of mud trampled around a village well could have been tiles someone would actually use.

Yet another colossal & outlandish tavern no local could afford, with gigantic (over five-foot diameter!) round tables, rather than normal plank affairs. This might be reasonable, if the tabletops were sections sawn from a mighty trunk, but from the grain, they are clearly not. And chairs, chairs, chairs, rather than normal tavern benches. Someone put a lot of money into serving these peasant yokels.

Attractive art of ludicrous content, so par for the course.

Sorry that, you don't like it. I often design spaces to be a little larger and over the top because instead of merely describing these areas, these are places where an entire party of adventurers will likely engage in a combat encounter of some type. I like to have a bit of room for those.

Maybe the next few will be to your liking.

Good gaming.

Designer

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I assure you that it is bigger and caverny. It's fun. You'll like it. You should order five! ;)

Designer

Just to warn you guys, I've switched things up from the section of the story I was running earlier in the convention season. I hope you all don't mind an actual bit of dungeon crawl under a decrepit monastery instead.

If you do mind it, well you have a few days to get over it.

Designer

HoloGnome wrote:

Paizo occasionally offers retired scenarios at CONs, and the players get PFS credit. For example, I recently played PFS0-25: Hands of the Muted God (retired), GM'd by Tonya at our local CON.

In the case of Skeleton Moon, since the event says that PFS-legal characters are required, the expectation is that players would receive credit and that it's another one of those rare chances to play a retired scenario.

Generally speaking, if you're playing society PCs, it's a society game (and you are required to bring the resources for your character, books, chronicles, etc.).

It's for PFS credit. It's the out-of-retirement adventure that I've picked up to run for folks. I've run it at OwlCon and GaryCon both for PFS credit.

Designer

Mosaic wrote:
Cool. Just please, oh please, play nice with the old ice tunnels set.

A small part does. This set is more above-ground frozen sites.

Designer

moon-beast wrote:

So this is a double sided map. Are we getting two different sunken cities (one on each side)?

Yes.

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