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Paizo Employee Creative Director

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CrimsonVixen wrote:

I have finally gotten through reading the Rise of the Runelords Anniversary Edition, and the parts on Thassalonian magic confused me. If the 'opposition schools' are outright forbidden and unable to be used by those who practice Thassalonian magic.

How is it that Sorshen is thematically connected to vampires, blood-magic, and immortality when the fact she is the Runelord of Lust prevents her from accessing the necromancy and transmutation schools?

It seems like the Everdawn Pool was far too limiting and time-consuming to be a primary source of casting necromancy and transmutation spells, or was Sorshen's power and knowledge of the artifact sufficient to bypass the limits on charges that Ileosa and the PCs have?

While vampires are undead, you do not need to be a necromancer or even able to use necromancy to ally with vampires. That alliance and the Everdawn Pool are basically one way she was bolstering one area where she knew she was lacking... but she was a runelord for a LONG LONG time... well over a thousand years. She had a lot going on, and what you see in Crimson Throne is just a fraction of everything. Needless to say, Sorshen's ability to use the Everdawn Pool was MUCH more significant than what others, including Ileosa, could do.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

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AlgaeNymph wrote:
James Jacobs wrote:
AlgaeNymph wrote:
James Jacobs wrote:
TrinitysEnd wrote:
If you had a limitless amount of money to make a single Adventure Path into a movie, which one would you want to make into a movie?
Hell's Rebels.

I've read that a few times before, to which I say: cool. :)

Who would be the hero(ine)s? of the story?

Shensen, of course!

How would that work, given that she's kinda stuck until the middle of the AP?

Who'd be in the PCs' places? (Not to say that they'd upstage her, of course.)

Turns out, when we build an adventure, there's a key element that's missing from pretty much EVERY OTHER form of entertainment. We don't present any main characters. There are no protagonists in adventures, since that role is for the PCs.

As a result, if we transform an adventure into a more traditional story (as is done with novels, comics, and audio dramas we do, and as would be done with movies), we have to add in those characters. Normally, we have the iconics step in to take those roles, but you asked me my preference, and I'd rather see Shensen, my favorite ever PC, be the star. She wouldn't be "stuck" until the middle of the AP, in this case... and indeed, if it's just a movie, I wouldn't do all 6 parts anyway, since a movie isn't enough to do the whole thing.

If on the other hand you wanted to keep it as-is, then the stars would be the 4 PCs we used for the art. Merisiel, Kyra, and whoever else was in there.


Pathfinder Adventure, Adventure Path, Companion, Lost Omens, Maps, Rulebook Subscriber

What is your opinion of this ranking of the best five horror stories*?

(If you don't feel like clicking, the bare bones is 1) The Great God Pan by Arthur Machen, 2) The Island of Dr. Moreau by H. G. Wells, 3) Collected Ghost Stories by M. R. James, 4) Dracula by Bram Stoker, and 5) The King in Yellow by Robert W. Chambers, but there's an interview with the professor who made the list about the horror genre that you might find interesting as a fan.)

I know I've seen you mention Pan and King in Yellow, but are any of those works unfamiliar to you? (I had never heard of M. R. James, but I don't consider myself a horror fan.)

*:
I presume "in English" is implied. Bonus question: To what extent, if any, are you aware of the horror genre in other languages/cultures? The professor in the interview ties the high water mark of the genre pretty tightly to the British Empire and the impact of Darwin's thought.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

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Joana wrote:

What is your opinion of this ranking of the best five horror stories*?

(If you don't feel like clicking, the bare bones is 1) The Great God Pan by Arthur Machen, 2) The Island of Dr. Moreau by H. G. Wells, 3) Collected Ghost Stories by M. R. James, 4) Dracula by Bram Stoker, and 5) The King in Yellow by Robert W. Chambers, but there's an interview with the professor who made the list about the horror genre that you might find interesting as a fan.)

I know I've seen you mention Pan and King in Yellow, but are any of those works unfamiliar to you? (I had never heard of M. R. James, but I don't consider myself a horror fan.)

** spoiler omitted **

I disagree with that list. I would put none of those on my "best five horror stories" list, and wouldn't cheat by putting in collections of stories like "Collected Ghost Stories" or "The King in Yellow." They're all great stories, and I'm familiar with all of them (Dr. Moreau is the only one I've not read on that list, but I know the story).

M. R. James is one of the best though, that's for sure; his ghost stories are among the creepiest ever, but my favorite of his stories is "Casting the Runes," which inspired a big plot element of the 2nd Council of Thieves adventure.

I've read some horror from other nations, but not a lot, since I only read english and have to rely on translations. That said, the last book that I read to give me a nightmare was a Japanese translation of Ringu.


James Jacobs wrote:
AlgaeNymph wrote:
James Jacobs wrote:
AlgaeNymph wrote:
James Jacobs wrote:
TrinitysEnd wrote:
If you had a limitless amount of money to make a single Adventure Path into a movie, which one would you want to make into a movie?
Hell's Rebels.

I've read that a few times before, to which I say: cool. :)

Who would be the hero(ine)s? of the story?

Shensen, of course!

How would that work, given that she's kinda stuck until the middle of the AP?

Who'd be in the PCs' places? (Not to say that they'd upstage her, of course.)

Turns out, when we build an adventure, there's a key element that's missing from pretty much EVERY OTHER form of entertainment. We don't present any main characters. There are no protagonists in adventures, since that role is for the PCs.

As a result, if we transform an adventure into a more traditional story (as is done with novels, comics, and audio dramas we do, and as would be done with movies), we have to add in those characters. Normally, we have the iconics step in to take those roles, but you asked me my preference, and I'd rather see Shensen, my favorite ever PC, be the star. She wouldn't be "stuck" until the middle of the AP, in this case... and indeed, if it's just a movie, I wouldn't do all 6 parts anyway, since a movie isn't enough to do the whole thing.

If on the other hand you wanted to keep it as-is, then the stars would be the 4 PCs we used for the art. Merisiel, Kyra, and whoever else was in there.

Hey!!


Pathfinder Adventure, Adventure Path, Companion, Lost Omens, Maps, Rulebook Subscriber

Which Skill would you most strongly associate with Desna?

Paizo Employee Creative Director

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Joana wrote:
Which Skill would you most strongly associate with Desna?

Fly


Do we still hope to see the "test of the starstone" adventure? Do you have a plans in that direction? Maybe 2018? Come on, make me happy.


Regarding paladins: the rulebooks do not specifically state that paladins need to follow a deity, and the warrior of the holy light archetype has a line "focus on the holy light that shines within their souls" that seems to hint that paladins draw on a non deistic source of divine power.

Considering that, what is the source of a paladin's paladiness? Is it possible to have a dystheist (I hesitate to use the term atheist at all in a setting where the existence of deities is readily demonstrable) paladin? If they do adhere to a certain deity's religion, does that deity become the divine source of their paladiness, or merely a supplement?

Paizo Employee Creative Director

Alonzo wrote:
Do we still hope to see the "test of the starstone" adventure? Do you have a plans in that direction? Maybe 2018? Come on, make me happy.

No idea.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

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Blaeringr wrote:

Regarding paladins: the rulebooks do not specifically state that paladins need to follow a deity, and the warrior of the holy light archetype has a line "focus on the holy light that shines within their souls" that seems to hint that paladins draw on a non deistic source of divine power.

Considering that, what is the source of a paladin's paladiness? Is it possible to have a dystheist (I hesitate to use the term atheist at all in a setting where the existence of deities is readily demonstrable) paladin? If they do adhere to a certain deity's religion, does that deity become the divine source of their paladiness, or merely a supplement?

It's up to your GM.


James Jacobs wrote:
Blaeringr wrote:

Regarding paladins: the rulebooks do not specifically state that paladins need to follow a deity, and the warrior of the holy light archetype has a line "focus on the holy light that shines within their souls" that seems to hint that paladins draw on a non deistic source of divine power.

Considering that, what is the source of a paladin's paladiness? Is it possible to have a dystheist (I hesitate to use the term atheist at all in a setting where the existence of deities is readily demonstrable) paladin? If they do adhere to a certain deity's religion, does that deity become the divine source of their paladiness, or merely a supplement?

It's up to your GM.

Follow up: if a paladin repeatedly breaks their deity's paladin code in a way that they still conform to the generic paladin code, or for some other reason a paladin is expelled from their church while still remaining faithful to the generic paladin code, do they still remain a paladin?

Quick example: Torag's paladins follow this tenet "I am at all times truthful, honorable, and forthright, but my allegiance is to my people. I will do what is necessary to serve them, including misleading others if need be." A paladin who refuses to lie, and who through his honesty embarrasses his people, and perhaps creates a diplomatic incident, could be considered to be in conflict with Torag's teachings. If a paladin of Torag repeatedly embarrasses his people in this way so that his status in Torag's eyes is diminished, and the politicians and priests cast him out, is he still a paladin?

Since political leaders are always so well behaved, I know this will rarely come up, but on the off chance that it does...

Paizo Employee Creative Director

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Blaeringr wrote:
James Jacobs wrote:
Blaeringr wrote:

Regarding paladins: the rulebooks do not specifically state that paladins need to follow a deity, and the warrior of the holy light archetype has a line "focus on the holy light that shines within their souls" that seems to hint that paladins draw on a non deistic source of divine power.

Considering that, what is the source of a paladin's paladiness? Is it possible to have a dystheist (I hesitate to use the term atheist at all in a setting where the existence of deities is readily demonstrable) paladin? If they do adhere to a certain deity's religion, does that deity become the divine source of their paladiness, or merely a supplement?

It's up to your GM.

Follow up: if a paladin repeatedly breaks their deity's paladin code in a way that they still conform to the generic paladin code, or for some other reason a paladin is expelled from their church while still remaining faithful to the generic paladin code, do they still remain a paladin?

Quick example: Torag's paladins follow this tenet "I am at all times truthful, honorable, and forthright, but my allegiance is to my people. I will do what is necessary to serve them, including misleading others if need be." A paladin who refuses to lie, and who through his honesty embarrasses his people, and perhaps creates a diplomatic incident, could be considered to be in conflict with Torag's teachings. If a paladin of Torag repeatedly embarrasses his people in this way so that his status in Torag's eyes is diminished, and the politicians and priests cast him out, is he still a paladin?

Since political leaders are always so well behaved, I know this will rarely come up, but on the off chance that it does...

If a paladin worships a deity, that deity's code IS their paladin code, and they shouldn't be following a "generic paladin code" in the first place. A paladin doesn't get two codes. She gets one, and that's the one that matters.

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Companion, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

Question, how far have you gotten into Nioh now?


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Starfinder Charter Superscriber

Ah, the Internet! Ruining good things for decades.

If I may change topics: James, I've got PCs about to head for Magnimar and I'm hoping to work in the Monument Boons concept, which I think is really original. Is the idea here that these monuments were intentionally constructed to provide the magical benefits (if the correct ritual were followed) as a sort of "gift" to the citizenry? Are the rituals to get each boon widely known?


Pathfinder Companion, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

1) Since you developed Bestiary 6, do you have a particular place in Golarion in mind for where rougarou are to be found, if anywhere? Arcadia, perhaps? Or is that something you haven't given much thought yet, or aren't prepared to share information about?

2) If you wanted to see how far someone could toss something in a non-combat context (such as a rock or a ball...or perhaps even trying to toss a party member across a river), what would you use to decide how far it went? Would it be a basic Strength check, or something else?

3) If you could choose between always being able to understand what someone meant when they said something (even over the internet), the ability to create up to three waypoints in person that you could teleport between at-will (creating more removes the old waypoints in the order they were created), or the ability to telekinetically lift things you could physically see from a distance (with as much strength as you actually possess), which would you pick?


I recently watched The Dinosaur Project: Although I'm not much of a fan of the 'found-footage' genre (in general), I really enjoyed the movie!

Thank you for the recommendation!

I've been rereading World War Z recently (together with some of my older students). I seem to recall that you have read the book, too. (I could be wrong about that - apologies for any assumptions on my part.)

Question: What were/are your thoughts on the book (as well as its companion book, The Zombie Survival Guide)?

Please and thank you.

--C.

PS: The book has got me in the mood to give Train to Busan a go sooner rather than later! ^^


It seems like they announced your book of the damned product the same week that you announced you wrapped primary development on it. Did the crimson throne and book of the damned development overlap or was it more like completing one then starting the other?

Community & Digital Content Director

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Locking temporarily so we can sort through this.

EDIT: Unlocking. Folks, this thread is a casual and friendly space for folks to ask James questions, which he spends quite a significant amount of time doing (let me emphasize that given the volume of this thread, it is an incredibly gracious thing for him to be responding as frequently as he does). It is so, so completely uncool to abuse this channel for personal gain or to stir up drama from other online communities, as well as to somehow defame/harass any individual.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Paizo Superscriber; Pathfinder Companion, Pathfinder Accessories, Starfinder Accessories, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber

Do zombies need a survival guide? :)


Pathfinder Adventure, Adventure Path, Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber

Hi James!

I hear mention of a Book of the Damned that was just announced. I tried to find info on the website here, but couldn't find it. Can you tell us more about it? Also, is there a spot on Paizo's site that's best for keeping apprised of newly announced products?

Have a great day and thanks for all that you do!


1) Is Cheliax human-supremicist? That is, do humans hold all positions of power, and other humanoids are second-class citizens at best? Or does it only discriminate against halflings and tieflings?

2) What is a halfling's status in Cheliax? That is, is it outright illegal for a halfling to not have a master? Is it not technically illegal, but might as well be, as the halfling will be suspect and probably arrested on bogus charges right away? Or is it possible to be a free halfling, but you'd live in squalor with little legal protection, probably living in slums?

3) What about foreign halflings visiting? (Like, say, a halfling sailor on a merchant vessel?) Would he be arrested and enslaved? Severely discriminated and probably assaulted? Or just refused service, but allowed to do their business (With a lot of dirty looks?)


According to the Gygaxian model, a Paladin would be within his rights to summarily execute an evil cultist who has repented from good on the grounds that he would be preventing him from backsliding and would send him to a hallowed afterlife.

Would this sit with Sarenrae?

Paizo Employee Creative Director

Rysky wrote:
Question, how far have you gotten into Nioh now?

I finished the main story a few weeks back but haven't finished all the missions yet.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

Jhaeman wrote:
James, I've got PCs about to head for Magnimar and I'm hoping to work in the Monument Boons concept, which I think is really original. Is the idea here that these monuments were intentionally constructed to provide the magical benefits (if the correct ritual were followed) as a sort of "gift" to the citizenry? Are the rituals to get each boon widely known?

The rituals are not "widely" known, but the fact that the monuments give boons is widely known. The idea is indeed that they're a gift to the citizens... or more accurate, a gift and support to the defenders of the citizens. AKA Adventurers and their ilk.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

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Luthorne wrote:

1) Since you developed Bestiary 6, do you have a particular place in Golarion in mind for where rougarou are to be found, if anywhere? Arcadia, perhaps? Or is that something you haven't given much thought yet, or aren't prepared to share information about?

2) If you wanted to see how far someone could toss something in a non-combat context (such as a rock or a ball...or perhaps even trying to toss a party member across a river), what would you use to decide how far it went? Would it be a basic Strength check, or something else?

3) If you could choose between always being able to understand what someone meant when they said something (even over the internet), the ability to create up to three waypoints in person that you could teleport between at-will (creating more removes the old waypoints in the order they were created), or the ability to telekinetically lift things you could physically see from a distance (with as much strength as you actually possess), which would you pick?

1) Arcradia makes sense to me, and is my preference.

2) I'd look at real world throwing statistics and then extrapolate from there, but if it came up at the game I'd use something like the mechanic for Bull Rush or Awesome Blow.

3) Waypoint teleportation. No contest. I think that knowing what people really mean when they say something would only destroy my already shaky faith in humanity, and the telekinesis thing is not as time saving and convenient as teleportation.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

Psiphyre wrote:

I recently watched The Dinosaur Project: Although I'm not much of a fan of the 'found-footage' genre (in general), I really enjoyed the movie!

Thank you for the recommendation!

I've been rereading World War Z recently (together with some of my older students). I seem to recall that you have read the book, too. (I could be wrong about that - apologies for any assumptions on my part.)

Question: What were/are your thoughts on the book (as well as its companion book, The Zombie Survival Guide)?

Please and thank you.

--C.

PS: The book has got me in the mood to give Train to Busan a go sooner rather than later! ^^

I really enjoyed the book. The audio book is great as well, although abridged, alas.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

BobTheCoward wrote:
It seems like they announced your book of the damned product the same week that you announced you wrapped primary development on it. Did the crimson throne and book of the damned development overlap or was it more like completing one then starting the other?

I didn't announce my finishing development until after it was announced, not the other way around.

Crimson Throne and Book of the Damned didn't overlap. Adventurer's Guide was in between them.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

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Chris Lambertz wrote:

Locking temporarily so we can sort through this.

EDIT: Unlocking. Folks, this thread is a casual and friendly space for folks to ask James questions, which he spends quite a significant amount of time doing (let me emphasize that given the volume of this thread, it is an incredibly gracious thing for him to be responding as frequently as he does). It is so, so completely uncool to abuse this channel for personal gain or to stir up drama from other online communities, as well as to somehow defame/harass any individual.

Thanks, Chris! As always, you continue to be the best part of these messageboards!

Paizo Employee Creative Director

Ed Reppert wrote:
Do zombies need a survival guide? :)

No... the point is surviving zombies, not zombies surviving.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

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MeanDM wrote:

Hi James!

I hear mention of a Book of the Damned that was just announced. I tried to find info on the website here, but couldn't find it. Can you tell us more about it? Also, is there a spot on Paizo's site that's best for keeping apprised of newly announced products?

Have a great day and thanks for all that you do!

Click here for the product page.

It's a hardcover compilation of the first 3 books, with an additional 64 pages of additional information that expands information about the existing fiendish demigods and their realms, as well as expanding into descriptions of other fiends and their leaders, like divs, asuras, demodands, sahkils, oni daimyo, kytons, etc.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

Trigger Loaded wrote:

1) Is Cheliax human-supremicist? That is, do humans hold all positions of power, and other humanoids are second-class citizens at best? Or does it only discriminate against halflings and tieflings?

2) What is a halfling's status in Cheliax? That is, is it outright illegal for a halfling to not have a master? Is it not technically illegal, but might as well be, as the halfling will be suspect and probably arrested on bogus charges right away? Or is it possible to be a free halfling, but you'd live in squalor with little legal protection, probably living in slums?

3) What about foreign halflings visiting? (Like, say, a halfling sailor on a merchant vessel?) Would he be arrested and enslaved? Severely discriminated and probably assaulted? Or just refused service, but allowed to do their business (With a lot of dirty looks?)

1) No.

2) They are as legal as any other race, but they face a fair amount of racisim there. You can be a free halfling in Cheliax, but it's not very enjoyable overall.

3) They'd face racisim and discrimination, but they wouldn't be refused service. It's unpleasant but not violently antagonistic.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

Drahliana Moonrunner wrote:

According to the Gygaxian model, a Paladin would be within his rights to summarily execute an evil cultist who has repented from good on the grounds that he would be preventing him from backsliding and would send him to a hallowed afterlife.

Would this sit with Sarenrae?

No. And it's not a paladin's "right" to execute ANYONE, regardless of the paladin's faith.

And it's one of the reasons that there's comparatively not a lot of Sarenite paladins; it's tough for them to square the circle about being good all the time but sometimes not being lawful.


What was the Korvosa - Kaer Maga conflict like? I'm assuming they didn't put together anything like a coherent defence? Also what's up with Sirathu? I read it used to be a Kaer Maga holding, did one faction in particular hold it?

Thanks mate.


James Jacobs wrote:
Drahliana Moonrunner wrote:

According to the Gygaxian model, a Paladin would be within his rights to summarily execute an evil cultist who has repented from good on the grounds that he would be preventing him from backsliding and would send him to a hallowed afterlife.

Would this sit with Sarenrae?

No. And it's not a paladin's "right" to execute ANYONE, regardless of the paladin's faith.

And it's one of the reasons that there's comparatively not a lot of Sarenite paladins; it's tough for them to square the circle about being good all the time but sometimes not being lawful.

I meant repented from evil TO good.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

Ianesta wrote:

What was the Korvosa - Kaer Maga conflict like? I'm assuming they didn't put together anything like a coherent defence? Also what's up with Sirathu? I read it used to be a Kaer Maga holding, did one faction in particular hold it?

Thanks mate.

Haven't really done much thought on that at all. Kaer Maga is a weird sort of "intruder" in what I envisioned for Varisia. It's a GREAT addition to the region, but it was never intended to be there. It was placed by James Sutter, and he's been more or less in charge of it and its development ever since. As such, I've not really put much thought into how Kaer Maga interacts with nearby settings, and in my head have always thought of it as an inward-focused settlement that's more interested in providing safe harbor for its ecclectic citizens rather than influencing the surrounding region.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

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Drahliana Moonrunner wrote:
James Jacobs wrote:
Drahliana Moonrunner wrote:

According to the Gygaxian model, a Paladin would be within his rights to summarily execute an evil cultist who has repented from good on the grounds that he would be preventing him from backsliding and would send him to a hallowed afterlife.

Would this sit with Sarenrae?

No. And it's not a paladin's "right" to execute ANYONE, regardless of the paladin's faith.

And it's one of the reasons that there's comparatively not a lot of Sarenite paladins; it's tough for them to square the circle about being good all the time but sometimes not being lawful.

I meant repented from evil TO good.

No difference, other than to double down and to say that anyone who executes a redeemed bad guy and worships Sarenrae is gonna be excommunicated... at best. That is NOT what Sarenrae is about.

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