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James Jacobs wrote:
Kalindlara wrote:

In a post-Second Darkness Golarion, how do you feel about redeemed drow as PCs? Not necessarily "I was always good" Drizzt-types, but perhaps those brought to the light more organically.

I kind of want to play one in Jade Regent as Shalelu's "little sister", especially given her role in preventing the Second Darkness. :)

Since my favorite all-time character, who I put into Shackled City and then again put her into Golarion and who I'm giving a semi-starring role in Hell's Rebels and who'll have a big presence in the 100th volume of Pathfinder and who I name pretty much ALL of my video game characters after is in fact a redeemed drow PC (she got reincarnated into an aquatic half-elf about 2/3 the way through her original adventuring career), and since Eilistraee is hands-down my absolute favorite Forgotten Realms deity...

... my take on redeemed drow PCs is that they're super awesome.

So you name all of your characters Ileosa then? :P (I kid, I kid)

Have you ever run into the "Oh gosh, another Drizz't clone" mentality when anyone wants to play a redeemed drow?

How have you handled it if you have?

Was Shalelu (I think that's her name?) created before or after everyone's favorite ranger?

If she was created after, was she inspired by him at all?

Silver Crusade

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Haladir wrote:
James Jacobs wrote:
Spook205 wrote:
3.) If there were infestations of Giant Polyps on Golarian, where would they be?
3) Giant polyps? I assume giant versions of the primitive tiny water-borne creatures, and not the things that grow inside of people. I suspect the best place for them would be in any soggy area... the Sodden Lands come immediately to mind.
I have a sneaking suspicion that Spook205 meant "Flying Polyps"...

Correct! Since Mr. Jacobs references them in answer to my next question I assumed that he was making a point of answering my question as asked though just in case. The error for this one is mine.

Course now I've got an idea for mobile swarms of malicious polyps.

More crazy questions though.

1.) Does Pharsma's mandate for adjudicating the dead extend only to golarian? Are there species or people outside of her mandate? For example, does she get involved when Osiris is weighing hearts?

2.) You mentioned that the forces of evil can send other people's souls to other destinations, this seems a contribution to the theory that Core Pathfinder is a bit on the cosmic horror side of things. How does Asmodeus justify such actions? Lawful being that he is, the innocent are not his lawful prey.

3.) A corollary to 2. If evil cultists, devil worshipers etc, have this capacity, doesn't it intrinsically balance things towards the forces of evil?

4.) If Good's only recourse is to storm The Abyss/Hell to presumably liberate these souls stolen from their reward, and Hell/The Abyss remain fully capable of storming Heaven right back, doesn't this denigrate the gods to just nation-states writ large contending over a living natural resource?

5.) Similarly, why don't the qippolth just attack say the positive to stave off soul development and starve their opponents out? Do they fear eradication in response, even though they're naturally spawned from the (presumably) infinite Abyss.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

Haladir wrote:
James Jacobs wrote:
Spook205 wrote:
3.) If there were infestations of Giant Polyps on Golarian, where would they be?
3) Giant polyps? I assume giant versions of the primitive tiny water-borne creatures, and not the things that grow inside of people. I suspect the best place for them would be in any soggy area... the Sodden Lands come immediately to mind.
I have a sneaking suspicion that Spook205 meant "Flying Polyps"...

Maybe. In which case, my answer would be "In some lost desert realm."

Paizo Employee Creative Director

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Tels wrote:
James Jacobs wrote:
Kalindlara wrote:

In a post-Second Darkness Golarion, how do you feel about redeemed drow as PCs? Not necessarily "I was always good" Drizzt-types, but perhaps those brought to the light more organically.

I kind of want to play one in Jade Regent as Shalelu's "little sister", especially given her role in preventing the Second Darkness. :)

Since my favorite all-time character, who I put into Shackled City and then again put her into Golarion and who I'm giving a semi-starring role in Hell's Rebels and who'll have a big presence in the 100th volume of Pathfinder and who I name pretty much ALL of my video game characters after is in fact a redeemed drow PC (she got reincarnated into an aquatic half-elf about 2/3 the way through her original adventuring career), and since Eilistraee is hands-down my absolute favorite Forgotten Realms deity...

... my take on redeemed drow PCs is that they're super awesome.

So you name all of your characters Ileosa then? :P (I kid, I kid)

Have you ever run into the "Oh gosh, another Drizz't clone" mentality when anyone wants to play a redeemed drow?

How have you handled it if you have?

Was Shalelu (I think that's her name?) created before or after everyone's favorite ranger?

If she was created after, was she inspired by him at all?

Ha. No. Ileosa IS from my homebrew game, but she was never a PC. She was always an evil queen NPC.

I've never run into that mentality personally. Mostly because I've never had someone try to play a "Driz'zt clone."

Shalelu was created for Burnt Offerings; she wasn't a PC or NPC before that, although I suspect HAD I at some point made a ranger, she would have been like Shalelu.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

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Spook205 wrote:

1.) Does Pharsma's mandate for adjudicating the dead extend only to golarian? Are there species or people outside of her mandate? For example, does she get involved when Osiris is weighing hearts?

2.) You mentioned that the forces of evil can send other people's souls to other destinations, this seems a contribution to the theory that Core Pathfinder is a bit on the cosmic horror side of things. How does Asmodeus justify such actions? Lawful being that he is, the innocent are not his lawful prey.

3.) A corollary to 2. If evil cultists, devil worshipers etc, have this capacity, doesn't it intrinsically balance things towards the forces of evil?

4.) If Good's only recourse is to storm The Abyss/Hell to presumably liberate these souls stolen from their reward, and Hell/The Abyss remain fully capable of storming Heaven right back, doesn't this denigrate the gods to just nation-states writ large contending over a living natural resource?

5.) Similarly, why don't the qippolth just attack say the positive to stave off soul development and starve their opponents out? Do they fear eradication in response, even though they're naturally spawned from the (presumably) infinite Abyss.

1) Nope. She judges all the dead in the Great Beyond. Osiris more or less works for her.

2) Lawful does not mean "I won't attempt to capture and torment my enemies." In fact, that's where the evil side of things kicks in. Lawful does not mean "blind adherence to all law everywhere." Otherwise Paladins would not be able to exist.

3) It does, which is why it's important for good guys to not slack.

4) It's sort of an arms-race and a cold war, with both sides choosing their battles.

5) Because the qlippoth lack the numbers to pull that off; they know that if they tried something like this, pretty much all of the Great Beyond would rally against them.

Sovereign Court

James Jacobs wrote:
Darius Darrenbar wrote:

James quick question,

I'm presently running Skull and Shackles with my online group and a few of the players have expressed an interest in defecting to Cheliax once they've avenged themselves on Barnabas Harrigan. The group is pretty new to the game but they have some knowledge about the setting in general so they are familiar with the history between Cheliax and the Shackles but aren't aware of Harrigan's role in the campaign other than he's responsible for their present situation and is probably the final boss in the campaign. Their plan is to kill him off and then discreetly inform the Chelish navy what they know about the strengths and weakness of the Shackles, which given when they'll finally face Harrigan could be quite a bit.

How drastically would it affect the campaign if the PC's decide to throw in their lot with Druvalia Thrune and what is the most likely outcome they could expect from Cheliax provided the invasion is successful.

I would work to present Cheliax as bad guys; it'll take a LONG time before the group gets revenge on Barnabas, and in that time, you (and the adventure itself) should have plenty of time to show the players how bad Cheliax is, and that can set up for some really fun character arcs after the PCs who were pro-Cheliax turned anti-Cheliax.

That said, your plan wouldn't alter the game much at all, other than to change the nature of the first part of the last adventure. The PCs would still need to do the bulk of the last adventure even if they end up working for Cheliax; they just are doing it for different reasons than for themselves.

For the most part they see it as they were drugged and press ganged against their will in an area where that sort of behavior (and worse) is apparently acceptable, so by that logic any country invading to try and end piracy in the Shackles and bring some sense of order and stability can’t be all that bad. Doesn’t help we started watching Black Sails on Showtime not too long ago so you might have an general idea how they’re handling going about the situation.

So if Cheliax were to succeed what is their overall plan for the Shackles exactly? I don’t think it was really ever established just what they intended for the territory in question outside of it being a stepping stone to reclaiming Sargava and ending piracy in the area. What would be the likely outcome? For that matter what could be in store for Druvalia outside of increasing her rank and standing within House Thrune? Given the pact she and her uncle made how likely is it that Geryon would gain any religious influence within the newly conquered Shackles?
Also what rewards (or punishment) could the PC’s expect for their service to the crown if any?


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Hello Mr. Jacobs!

How are you today?

I was reading past posts on this thread and noticed that you said Queen Ileosa was an evil NPC from your home game. I was curious to know what she did in your home game. Also, which Ileosa was worse? Pathfinder's version or your homebrewed version?

Hope you have a good rest of the week!

Sczarni RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

James Jacobs wrote:
CorvusMask wrote:
4) Speaking of tv show competitions, why are they and reality tv still going strong? D: When will people stop watching that stuff?..
4) Turns out, the world's big enough for all sorts of different tastes and interests. My advice? Focus on the TV shows you like and ignore the ones you don't. That's how I deal with things like Duck Dynasty or Dr. Who.

Are you saying you focus on Duck Dynasty and ignore Dr. Who? I know before you said you don't watch Dr. Who, but you have never revealed your love of Duck Dynasty before!

What does your cat do that freaks you out the most?


Hi James, I do not recall seeing much mention of spellblight areas (UM) in any Campaign setting books. Are there any such areas in the inner sea region?


James Jacobs wrote:
Nicos wrote:
James Jacobs wrote:
Nicos wrote:
James Jacobs wrote:
Zhangar wrote:
Would the Four Horsemen release Rovagug from its prison if they had the opportunity and means to do so?
No.
WHy not? (sorry if I missed an earlier answer)
Because they're not Rovagug's ally, and he'd likely crush them to atoms. Probably accidentally.
Any other evil outsider race would release Rovagug?

Unlikely. MAYBE the qlippoth, but even then unlikely.

If one DID want to try... there would have been attempts already, and those attempts would have been mentioned by us already. Rovagug being locked up is a good thing for pretty much everyone. Except Rovagug.

Returning to this, What about Asuras? they want to destroy everything in the creation.

And now that we are talking about asuras, how important are them in golarion?


Have you seen the film Absentia?

How about The Mist?

Thoughts?

Silver Crusade

James Jacobs wrote:
Spook205 wrote:

4.) If Good's only recourse is to storm The Abyss/Hell to presumably liberate these souls stolen from their reward, and Hell/The Abyss remain fully capable of storming Heaven right back, doesn't this denigrate the gods to just nation-states writ large contending over a living natural resource?

5.) Similarly, why don't the qippolth just attack say the positive to stave off soul development and starve their opponents out? Do they fear eradication in response, even though they're naturally spawned from the (presumably) infinite Abyss.

4) It's sort of an arms-race and a cold war, with both sides choosing their battles.

5) Because the qlippoth lack the numbers to pull that off; they know that if they tried something like this, pretty much all of the Great Beyond would rally against them.

Some follow ups.

1.) In your response to four above you mention its an arms race and cold war. I assume from this you agree with my nation-states assessment (please disabuse me of this notion if I'm incorrect). Thusly, what rationale does a person have in Golarian for backing either side?

2.It seems like the cosmos is forcing people towards Neutrality in the hopes of becoming immortal, indestructible Aeons. Is this correct?
2a.)Wouldn't this then make Neutrality the actual Good since this seems to be either the utilitarian option or even the ontological 'best' alternative given that Good (and being good) apparently doesn't assure your soul immortality or even safety?

3.) Assuming the qlippoth are spawned directly from the very Abyss itself it seems to follow that this would grant them, by default, limitless numbers and ceaseless opportunities for replenishment. What, honestly, would an infinite species, spawned infinitely by the presumably non-sentient action of an infinite plane, have to fear even from a coalition of other outsiders (all of whom are apparently created from mortal souls and thus, finite)?

4.) Are the gods of the golarian setting omniscient? If they are not, is it then possible (albeit spectacularly mythically difficult) to feed Pharasma with misinformation and get yourself intentionally miscategorized?

Silver Crusade

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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion, Lost Omens, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber

Would you say the average paladin would be regarded by the average commoner as someone they can trust or offer hospitality to? I know in nations with institutionalized evil like Cheliax, Nidal, Irrisen or Geb they'd obviously have to keep a low profile to avoid being lynched or sacrificed in a blood ritual or made into a corpse puppet for a lich-lord's amusement, but in average places like Taldor, Varisia or even greyer areas like Ustalav generally regard a paladin's word as trustworthy and free of ulterior motive? Or does the average person regard paladins as troublemakers whose pursuit of evil kicks hornets' nests better left undisturbed?

This is something I wonder about in Ustalav in particular, as the general attitude of its populace seems to be "don't trust ANYONE or ANYTHING," and so I wonder if they'd give Paladins the cold shoulder anyway despite the reputation for honesty and stuff that saying you're a paladin implies.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

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Darius Darrenbar wrote:

For the most part they see it as they were drugged and press ganged against their will in an area where that sort of behavior (and worse) is apparently acceptable, so by that logic any country invading to try and end piracy in the Shackles and bring some sense of order and stability can’t be all that bad. Doesn’t help we started watching Black Sails on Showtime not too long ago so you might have an general idea how they’re handling going about the situation.

So if Cheliax were to succeed what is their overall plan for the Shackles exactly? I don’t think it was really ever established just what they intended for the territory in question outside of it being a stepping stone to reclaiming Sargava and ending piracy in the area. What would be the likely outcome? For that matter what could be in store for Druvalia outside of increasing her rank and standing within House Thrune? Given the pact she and her uncle made how likely is it that Geryon would gain any religious influence within the newly conquered Shackles?
Also what rewards (or punishment) could the PC’s expect for their service to the crown if any?

Look to what they did to Sargava for their goals and plans for the Shackles. Or to Isger, for that matter.

Not gonna go into too much what-if detail here, though, since that turns into design work and I've gotta save all that energy for the 2016 Adventure Path I'm supposed to finish outlining by tomorrow...

Silver Crusade

James, how would you feel about Gen Con moving to Seattle? Is it feasible? Do you think it would be a good move for Gen Con?

Paizo Employee Creative Director

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Generic GM wrote:

Hello Mr. Jacobs!

How are you today?

I was reading past posts on this thread and noticed that you said Queen Ileosa was an evil NPC from your home game. I was curious to know what she did in your home game. Also, which Ileosa was worse? Pathfinder's version or your homebrewed version?

Hope you have a good rest of the week!

Doing okay today.

What Ileosa did in my home game was pretty much the same as what she did in Crimson Throne... but on a national level, not a city level. Imagine, basically, if instead of taking over Korvosa she took over Taldor and started warring with every nation that surrounded her and was WINNING those wars. The PCs in that campaign started out with a campaign similar to Serpent's Skull, where they were fighting against the cult of Ydersius, but as they finished that plot it blended into a "Against Senulda" war (the nation Ileosa ruled from her capital city of Korvosa), that ended up being a "Invade the Deadlands to fight against the Shoal before they kill more gods!"

The first two plots have been translated into Pathfinder APs already—Curse of the Crimson Throne and Serpent's Skull. I've not yet translated the third into one yet, because I don't think management will let me kill off Irori with a transplanar supernatural immense faith parasite monster that siphons belief and digests it into anti-belief and then shoots it across the planes to kill a god.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

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Thomas LeBlanc wrote:
James Jacobs wrote:
CorvusMask wrote:
4) Speaking of tv show competitions, why are they and reality tv still going strong? D: When will people stop watching that stuff?..
4) Turns out, the world's big enough for all sorts of different tastes and interests. My advice? Focus on the TV shows you like and ignore the ones you don't. That's how I deal with things like Duck Dynasty or Dr. Who.

Are you saying you focus on Duck Dynasty and ignore Dr. Who? I know before you said you don't watch Dr. Who, but you have never revealed your love of Duck Dynasty before!

What does your cat do that freaks you out the most?

no.

I'm saying that Duck Dynasty and Dr. Who are super popular TV shows that I have no interest in but don't mind that others DO have interest in.

If I sleep with a foot or arm or whatever exposed to the air, at about 6:00 AM when she gets hungry, Shimmy will hop on the bed and meow and meow. If I ignore her... I'll feel a single claw lightly scratch at the exposed limb. That usually gets me out of bed fast, 'cause it's always unexpected to feel a talon caress you.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

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Alan_Beven wrote:
Hi James, I do not recall seeing much mention of spellblight areas (UM) in any Campaign setting books. Are there any such areas in the inner sea region?

No. Spellblights are something the design team came up with that didn't really have a built-in analog in Golarion. I could see spellblights showing up anywhere magic is messed up, like the Mana Wastes or the Eye of Abendego or the Worldwound or Nex or parts of Varisia where Thassilon's influence remains or some of the vaults in Orv or Azlant or Irrisen... but not to an extent that you'd see a whole region on the map.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

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Nicos wrote:

Returning to this, What about Asuras? they want to destroy everything in the creation.

And now that we are talking about asuras, how important are them in golarion?

Asuras wouldn't ally with Rovagug either. As I said... with the exception of the qlippoth (since Rovagug IS a qlippoth), outsider races are unlikely to want to try to release him.

Asuras are more important in Vudra and Casmaron than they are in the Inner Sea region. But there, I suspect they're as important as devils and demons are in Avistan/Northern Garund.


4 people marked this as a favorite.
James Jacobs wrote:
I've not yet translated the third into one yet, because I don't think management will let me kill off Irori with a transplanar supernatural immense faith parasite monster that siphons belief and digests it into anti-belief and then shoots it across the planes to kill a god.

Um. That sounds awesome?

Paizo Employee Creative Director

Mythic Evil Lincoln wrote:

Have you seen the film Absentia?

How about The Mist?

Thoughts?

I've seen both of them. And both of them were my favorite movies that released that year.

Absentia, in fact, is one I watched via a rental on Amazon, and as soon as I finished watching it, I immediately bought a copy. Every single person who I've recommended watch it has loved it. No other movie I've seen has managed to pull that stunt off.


James Jacobs wrote:
Mythic Evil Lincoln wrote:

Have you seen the film Absentia?

How about The Mist?

Thoughts?

I've seen both of them. And both of them were my favorite movies that released that year.

Absentia, in fact, is one I watched via a rental on Amazon, and as soon as I finished watching it, I immediately bought a copy. Every single person who I've recommended watch it has loved it. No other movie I've seen has managed to pull that stunt off.

Oh, excellent.

So, the commonality between those movies, I think, is that they're both instances of "cosmic horror" done right.

Are there any other movies you'd put in that list?

If you were to try and capture the horror in Absentia as a Pathfinder module, what kind of beastie would you use? Where would you set it?


And does The Mist depict Leng?

Or is that pretty close to "the Leng experience" anyway?

Paizo Employee Creative Director

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Spook205 wrote:
James Jacobs wrote:
Spook205 wrote:

4.) If Good's only recourse is to storm The Abyss/Hell to presumably liberate these souls stolen from their reward, and Hell/The Abyss remain fully capable of storming Heaven right back, doesn't this denigrate the gods to just nation-states writ large contending over a living natural resource?

5.) Similarly, why don't the qippolth just attack say the positive to stave off soul development and starve their opponents out? Do they fear eradication in response, even though they're naturally spawned from the (presumably) infinite Abyss.

4) It's sort of an arms-race and a cold war, with both sides choosing their battles.

5) Because the qlippoth lack the numbers to pull that off; they know that if they tried something like this, pretty much all of the Great Beyond would rally against them.

Some follow ups.

1.) In your response to four above you mention its an arms race and cold war. I assume from this you agree with my nation-states assessment (please disabuse me of this notion if I'm incorrect). Thusly, what rationale does a person have in Golarian for backing either side?

2.It seems like the cosmos is forcing people towards Neutrality in the hopes of becoming immortal, indestructible Aeons. Is this correct?
2a.)Wouldn't this then make Neutrality the actual Good since this seems to be either the utilitarian option or even the ontological 'best' alternative given that Good (and being good) apparently doesn't assure your soul immortality or even safety?

3.) Assuming the qlippoth are spawned directly from the very Abyss itself it seems to follow that this would grant them, by default, limitless numbers and ceaseless opportunities for replenishment. What, honestly, would an infinite species, spawned infinitely by the presumably non-sentient action of an infinite plane, have to fear even from a coalition of other outsiders (all of whom are apparently created from mortal souls and thus, finite)?

4.) Are the gods of the golarian setting omniscient? If they are not, is it then possible (albeit spectacularly mythically difficult) to feed Pharasma with misinformation and get yourself intentionally miscategorized?

1) A person in Golarion's rationale for choosing a side is to try to make the world a better place according to their beliefs, and to try to earn a place in the afterlife that aligns to those beliefs.

2) No. Aeons aren't indestructible. If they were, they wouldn't have stats. Furthermore, the emotionless outlook on reality an aeon follows is pretty alien to most mortal life, and wouldn't be an existence to which many mortals would want to aim for. I sure wouldn't.

2a) No, because pure neutrality like what you speak of has no interest in self-beterment or kindness or love or friendship or any of the other good things in life.

3) The idea of infinity is hard for folks to grasp, especially since two different infinite numbers don't have to be equal in number. For example, if you count to infinity by counting 1-2-3-4-5... you'll get to infinity after an infinite amount of time passes. But if you count by counting 10-20-30-40-50, you'll get to where the previous counter has MUCH faster. Both of you are counting to infinity, but one of you has more single digit numbers counted. NOW: That said... in Pathfinder, the Great Beyond is NOT infinite. It's just unimaginably vast and large. There are in fact finite amounts of qlippoth and ALL the outsider races, but those numbers are so immense that for our purposes, they're effectively infinite. But the qlippoth are less fecund than demons, who manifest new ones a LOT faster since all of mortal's existence is so efficient at sinning and dying.

4) They are not, but Pharasma is the closest they get. It's POSSIBLE to trick her, and other creatures have tricked her before (Urgathoa, for example, tricked her and thus became one of the first undead according to some myths).

Paizo Employee Creative Director

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Archpaladin Zousha wrote:

Would you say the average paladin would be regarded by the average commoner as someone they can trust or offer hospitality to? I know in nations with institutionalized evil like Cheliax, Nidal, Irrisen or Geb they'd obviously have to keep a low profile to avoid being lynched or sacrificed in a blood ritual or made into a corpse puppet for a lich-lord's amusement, but in average places like Taldor, Varisia or even greyer areas like Ustalav generally regard a paladin's word as trustworthy and free of ulterior motive? Or does the average person regard paladins as troublemakers whose pursuit of evil kicks hornets' nests better left undisturbed?

This is something I wonder about in Ustalav in particular, as the general attitude of its populace seems to be "don't trust ANYONE or ANYTHING," and so I wonder if they'd give Paladins the cold shoulder anyway despite the reputation for honesty and stuff that saying you're a paladin implies.

Yes. Whether or not the average commoner trusts that someone DRESSED like a paladin actually IS a paladin really depends on where the commoner lives. An Ustalavic commoner knows that there are liars and shapechangers out there, probably just down the street, and so he'd be much less prone to trusting a stranger who claims to be a paladin than, say, a commoner from Andoran.

In most all cases, the average commoner sees a confirmed paladin as a hero and a savior though. It's those other shiftless adventurers who might be kicking hornet's nests better left alone.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

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The Fox wrote:
James, how would you feel about Gen Con moving to Seattle? Is it feasible? Do you think it would be a good move for Gen Con?

I would LOVE It if Gen Con moved to Seattle... or anywhere on the West Coast, since the West Coast is my favorite part of the world and it's the part of the world I'm the most comfortable with for more or less every reason, and if I'm going to Gen Con, I'm guaranteed to be at a constant level of discomfort due to my mild but real phobia of crowds.

Seattle hosts larger conventions, like PAX, so yes, it's feasible.

Whether or not it would be a good move, I can't say. One reason that they've kept it in the "middle" of the states more or less is to try to standardize as best as possible the travel times from anywhere in the US. Moving to Seattle would make travel from the east coast a lot tougher and more expensive and that might well cause Gen Con to take a significant hit in their attendance numbers. Whether or not that'd be a bigger hit than the money they'd save by being local to the convention, I can't say.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

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Mythic Evil Lincoln wrote:

And does The Mist depict Leng?

Or is that pretty close to "the Leng experience" anyway?

I don't think so. Leng is scary, but in a different way. Leng is more relatable to humanity, since it springs in some way from our own dreaming minds. The other dimension in the Mist is NOT relatable to humanity.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

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Mythic Evil Lincoln wrote:
James Jacobs wrote:
Mythic Evil Lincoln wrote:

Have you seen the film Absentia?

How about The Mist?

Thoughts?

I've seen both of them. And both of them were my favorite movies that released that year.

Absentia, in fact, is one I watched via a rental on Amazon, and as soon as I finished watching it, I immediately bought a copy. Every single person who I've recommended watch it has loved it. No other movie I've seen has managed to pull that stunt off.

Oh, excellent.

So, the commonality between those movies, I think, is that they're both instances of "cosmic horror" done right.

Are there any other movies you'd put in that list?

If you were to try and capture the horror in Absentia as a Pathfinder module, what kind of beastie would you use? Where would you set it?

I would say that they bot do a great job at portraying cosmic horror, yes. "The Mist" is a MUCH bigger movie, of course. But both are very "Lovecraftian" in the cosmic horror sense.

I would add the following, off the top of my head, to the cosmic horror category. Not all are great, but all of these have element

Alien
John Carpenter's The Thing
John Carpenter's In the Mouth of Madness
John Carpenter's Prince of Darkness
From Beyond
The Cabin in the Woods
The Call of Cthulhu
Die Farbe
Europa Report
The Last Winter
Picnic at Hanging Rock
The Whisperer in Darkness
Yellowbrickroad
Marebito
Pontypool
Uzumaki
The Quartermass Experiment
Quartermass 2
Quartermass and the Pit
Lifeforce
Horror Express
Knowing
The Last Wave
Last Days on Mars
Monsters
The Gate
Pulse (the original Japanese version, NOT the American remake!)
Forbidden Planet
Toad Road
Lord of Tears
Banshee Chapter
2001*

*This one's not horror, no, but not everything Lovecraft wrote was horror. There are absolutely elements in 2001 that mesh well with Lovecraft's view that the universe is a vast place and that humanity's just a tiny part of it, and not, overall, a very important part of it. 2001's brilliance is that it presents these views in a way that doesn't particularly feel depressing, though.


I am currently working on an Gnome Bard (Archeologist) soon-to-be Arcane Trickster for PFS. He is a prankster and a pickpocket, thieving mastermind. Very charismatic and intelligent and likes to get others to do his bidding (he will be focusing on illusion and enchantment spells).

I was in the middle of picking his languages, I chose Dwarven because dwarves make great appraisers and would very well be abundant among the fences around Golarion. Then I put down draconic, because well, they are also fantastic appraisers, and it got me thinking: Is there a dragon at least tolerant enough of non-dragons that he (Lux "Lucky" Heavypouch) would be able to have one he goes to for financial "advice" perhaps via offerings or such? Also, would this be viable for PFS? Or is it too GM-fiat dependent?


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
James Jacobs wrote:


From Beyond

That was my first exposure to Lovecraft! I was a kid and even though I didn't get it entirely, I knew I needed more. Started a lifetime obsession after I saw "based on a story by..." in the credits.

Anyway, question:

There's a decent-sized mountain range in western Garund called the Napsune Mountains. As far as I can tell they haven't been fleshed out at all. What are they likely? Particularly the section that makes up the eastern border of the Sodden Lands - and even more specifically, the region where Lirgeni astronomers once constructed their observatories.

Specifically, what kind of elevation do they reach (roughly)? Are they snow-capped like Africa's Atlas Mountains, or more of a warm, forested sort? There's an illustration of a Lirgeni observatory (the Dim Gate) in Lost Kingdoms that suggests the latter, but maybe that was built on a lower slope...

Thanks as always.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Companion, Maps Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

Would you allow a PC casting speak with animals to speak with a familiar? Technically, a familiar loses the animal subtype and becomes a magical beast, but the spell doesn't actually specify animal subtype.

Speak with Animals wrote:
You can ask questions of and receive answers from animals, but the spell doesn't make them any more friendly than normal. Wary and cunning animals are likely to be terse and evasive, while the more stupid ones make inane comments. If an animal is friendly toward you, it may do some favor or service for you.


1 person marked this as a favorite.

Question regarding Arcadia

Are there populations of the typical humanoid races there?
Elves
Orcs
Dwarves
Goblins
etc.

Or is it undefined with the possibility of them being there or is the continent mostly undefined with such populations basically decided to not be present?

Or, whatever/something else...

TIA


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Lost Omens, Rulebook, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Have you ever been to New England?

Dark Archive

Is levels in one of the Hellknight prestige classes required to be a Hellknight? What about wearing the armor? Can a person join the Hellknights, earn the right to wear the armor, yet not take the prestige class?

Dark Archive

Starfinder Superscriber
James Jacobs wrote:
DragoDorn wrote:
What are the odds of us ever getting an evil player character centered adventure path from Paizo? I would buy it even if it's just the We Be Goblins modules expanded in to a full sized adventure path.
The odds increase with each passing day, I'd say. It's certainly not an impossibility. I know that I would LOVE to do an evil adventure path.

Where on Golarion would be your first choice for the setting for said adventure path?

Sovereign Court

1 person marked this as a favorite.
James Jacobs wrote:
Darius Darrenbar wrote:

For the most part they see it as they were drugged and press ganged against their will in an area where that sort of behavior (and worse) is apparently acceptable, so by that logic any country invading to try and end piracy in the Shackles and bring some sense of order and stability can’t be all that bad. Doesn’t help we started watching Black Sails on Showtime not too long ago so you might have an general idea how they’re handling going about the situation.

So if Cheliax were to succeed what is their overall plan for the Shackles exactly? I don’t think it was really ever established just what they intended for the territory in question outside of it being a stepping stone to reclaiming Sargava and ending piracy in the area. What would be the likely outcome? For that matter what could be in store for Druvalia outside of increasing her rank and standing within House Thrune? Given the pact she and her uncle made how likely is it that Geryon would gain any religious influence within the newly conquered Shackles?
Also what rewards (or punishment) could the PC’s expect for their service to the crown if any?

Look to what they did to Sargava for their goals and plans for the Shackles. Or to Isger, for that matter.

Not gonna go into too much what-if detail here, though, since that turns into design work and I've gotta save all that energy for the 2016 Adventure Path I'm supposed to finish outlining by tomorrow...

My curiosity is peaked, outlining for Hell's Rebels or another AP if you don't mind me asking?

Grand Lodge

Hey James, I'm hoping you could help me with some rules questions I have about the Monk of The Empty Hand.

Let's say my character has a +1 quarterstaff, and Weapon Focus: Quarterstaff. Since I am now treating the +1 Quarterstaff as a improvised weapon that acts as itself.. do those bonuses still apply to attack and damage rolls?

Sovereign Court

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion Subscriber

Can I have Katina Mathieson's previous avatar? :)

Silver Crusade

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion, Lost Omens, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber

Which AP villain would you say would be the best disposed to do an evil laugh about their plans and stuff? I know usually the protagonists aren't present in the exposition scenes those laughs normally accompany so the odds of the villain doing so in front of the PCs is slim, but I'm curious all the same.

Dark Archive

How much does the average Gillman know about the aboleth? Assuming I was a slimehunter variant (reminder: they trade the usual magic +2 magic resistance/ -2 penalty vs. aboleth magic penalty for just a straight +2 vs. aboleth magic) and an Eldritch Raider rogue archetype with ranks in Dungeoneering and the Scholar feat tied to dungeoneering... a GM I threw a concept to still thinks I shouldn't be able to say I 'hate aboleth' because I don't know what they are. My main reason for asking this is to get some input from the creative director might help since most of what he knows about the gillmen is just what's on the IP-stripped d20pfsrd. Part of the reason he's so critical is he's had issues in the past with players who equate I am an elf with I am an expert on elves and elven history, what's this silly knowledge skill crap? and while I'm not looking to be an expert on aboleth, it seems to me a gillman should know the basics about their ancestral enemy, especially one that is from a family that has broken the chains in active defiance (that's how I see the slimehunter variant)

Dark Archive

James Jacobs wrote:


Whether or not it would be a good move, I can't say. One reason that they've kept it in the "middle" of the states more or less is to try to standardize as best as possible the travel times from anywhere in the US. Moving to Seattle would make travel from the east coast a lot tougher and more expensive and that might well cause Gen Con to take a significant hit in their attendance numbers. Whether or not that'd be a bigger hit than the money they'd save by being local to the convention, I can't say.

Yeah, for that very reason I am hoping they consider Kansas City. We're still central (actually even more central than Indiana) and we have some really nice facilities they could use. Sure, I'm a bit biased being that I am only 75 miles from KC, but I try to still look at it as you said here... so that would make KS/MO or elsewhere in the literal central time zone the best choice.


James, thanks for the excellent list. Your inclusion of Alien, the Thing, and especially 2001 (with caveat) was all I needed to convince my girlfriend to watch everything on it we haven't seen yet.

You may have missed this question because you compiled that excellent list, but:

If you were to try and capture the horror in Absentia as a Pathfinder module, what kind of beastie would you use? Where would you set it?

Of course, perhaps you declined to answer because it's such a cool idea that you might actually want to publish it some day, in which case feel free to ignore me.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

BigP4nda wrote:

I am currently working on an Gnome Bard (Archeologist) soon-to-be Arcane Trickster for PFS. He is a prankster and a pickpocket, thieving mastermind. Very charismatic and intelligent and likes to get others to do his bidding (he will be focusing on illusion and enchantment spells).

I was in the middle of picking his languages, I chose Dwarven because dwarves make great appraisers and would very well be abundant among the fences around Golarion. Then I put down draconic, because well, they are also fantastic appraisers, and it got me thinking: Is there a dragon at least tolerant enough of non-dragons that he (Lux "Lucky" Heavypouch) would be able to have one he goes to for financial "advice" perhaps via offerings or such? Also, would this be viable for PFS? Or is it too GM-fiat dependent?

That's VERY much a GM decision. Dragons in Golarion, as a general rule, do not often mix with humanoid society in that way though. It's very rare. It wouldn't really mesh well in PFS unless your character happened to meet one in an adventure and made friends that way.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Generic Villain wrote:
James Jacobs wrote:


From Beyond

That was my first exposure to Lovecraft! I was a kid and even though I didn't get it entirely, I knew I needed more. Started a lifetime obsession after I saw "based on a story by..." in the credits.

Anyway, question:

There's a decent-sized mountain range in western Garund called the Napsune Mountains. As far as I can tell they haven't been fleshed out at all. What are they likely? Particularly the section that makes up the eastern border of the Sodden Lands - and even more specifically, the region where Lirgeni astronomers once constructed their observatories.

Specifically, what kind of elevation do they reach (roughly)? Are they snow-capped like Africa's Atlas Mountains, or more of a warm, forested sort? There's an illustration of a Lirgeni observatory (the Dim Gate) in Lost Kingdoms that suggests the latter, but maybe that was built on a lower slope...

Thanks as always.

From Beyond is a fun movie. Especially since Lovecraft's story is essentially finished in the pre-credits sequence, which makes the rest of the movie into a sort of sequel to Lovecraft's original. Good times!

We haven't done much at all yet with the Napsume Mountains. They're not SUPER enormous. I hesitate to give them an average elevation, but they're not snow-capped, and are likely pretty barren. Think of the lower elevation mountains in Afghanistan or that region I suppose. Not a lot of jungle stuff, but the parts that DO have jungles are moslty along the Winding Way river side.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Joana wrote:

Would you allow a PC casting speak with animals to speak with a familiar? Technically, a familiar loses the animal subtype and becomes a magical beast, but the spell doesn't actually specify animal subtype.

Speak with Animals wrote:
You can ask questions of and receive answers from animals, but the spell doesn't make them any more friendly than normal. Wary and cunning animals are likely to be terse and evasive, while the more stupid ones make inane comments. If an animal is friendly toward you, it may do some favor or service for you.

I absolutely would allow this.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

3 people marked this as a favorite.
The Thing from Beyond the Edge wrote:

Question regarding Arcadia

Are there populations of the typical humanoid races there?
Elves
Orcs
Dwarves
Goblins
etc.

Or is it undefined with the possibility of them being there or is the continent mostly undefined with such populations basically decided to not be present?

Or, whatever/something else...

TIA

Not quite ready to say much more here yet. Humans are definitely the predominant race, and at least one familiar race is relatively common there as well, but it's a different land. Just as Tian Xia has some different common races, so do all the other continents.

We'll have more to say at some point. But not now.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

zergtitan wrote:
Have you ever been to New England?

Nope.

Furthest east I've been is somewhere in Atlanta, at the airport, which was a long complicated flight to Gen Con. The furthest east I've been OUTSIDE of an airport is Indianapolis, for Gen Con. Not counting trips to Gen Con... I've never left the Washington/California (and thus Oregon) side of things.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

Zelda Marie Lupescu wrote:
Is levels in one of the Hellknight prestige classes required to be a Hellknight? What about wearing the armor? Can a person join the Hellknights, earn the right to wear the armor, yet not take the prestige class?

Since the Hellknight prestige class is a prestige class... no. You don't have to have levels in the class to be in a Hellknight order. Most folks who don't are known as armigers, but there are some non-Hellknights in the group as well. You can likely earn the right to wear the armor in some rare situations (and of course anyone who wants to wear it can anyway, which isn't as big a problem in regions the Hellknights don't patrol)... but you have to have levels in the class to gain those special Hellknight armor perks of course.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

2 people marked this as a favorite.
DragoDorn wrote:
James Jacobs wrote:
DragoDorn wrote:
What are the odds of us ever getting an evil player character centered adventure path from Paizo? I would buy it even if it's just the We Be Goblins modules expanded in to a full sized adventure path.
The odds increase with each passing day, I'd say. It's certainly not an impossibility. I know that I would LOVE to do an evil adventure path.
Where on Golarion would be your first choice for the setting for said adventure path?

MY first choice? Probably Five Kings Mountains, where you'd play drow attacking the silly filthy dwarves. But there's plenty of other awesome locations; in fact, ANY region would suggest some neat evil AP ideas. And since there's already a drow vs. dwarf AP in the works from Fire Mountain Games... I wouldn't do that AP anyway.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Darius Darrenbar wrote:
James Jacobs wrote:
Darius Darrenbar wrote:

For the most part they see it as they were drugged and press ganged against their will in an area where that sort of behavior (and worse) is apparently acceptable, so by that logic any country invading to try and end piracy in the Shackles and bring some sense of order and stability can’t be all that bad. Doesn’t help we started watching Black Sails on Showtime not too long ago so you might have an general idea how they’re handling going about the situation.

So if Cheliax were to succeed what is their overall plan for the Shackles exactly? I don’t think it was really ever established just what they intended for the territory in question outside of it being a stepping stone to reclaiming Sargava and ending piracy in the area. What would be the likely outcome? For that matter what could be in store for Druvalia outside of increasing her rank and standing within House Thrune? Given the pact she and her uncle made how likely is it that Geryon would gain any religious influence within the newly conquered Shackles?
Also what rewards (or punishment) could the PC’s expect for their service to the crown if any?

Look to what they did to Sargava for their goals and plans for the Shackles. Or to Isger, for that matter.

Not gonna go into too much what-if detail here, though, since that turns into design work and I've gotta save all that energy for the 2016 Adventure Path I'm supposed to finish outlining by tomorrow...

My curiosity is peaked, outlining for Hell's Rebels or another AP if you don't mind me asking?

Hell's Rebel's outline has been done for nearly a year now. It's actually done being written, and next week I start developing part 3. Hell's Rebels is the August 2015 AP.

I'm outlining one that comes out next year. We will announce what it is at Gen Con this year.

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