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Liberty's Edge

James Jacobs wrote:
Those are personal names. Nicknames would be things like Cutter or Skywise or the like, yeah.

An ElfQuest shoutout????

You made my day :)

Are you an ElfQuest fan?


Dear James Jacobs,

Will we see more about the history behind Grandmaster Torch? Also was it always intended that the Decemvirate have bad apples in their midst?

Paizo Employee Creative Director

Marc Radle wrote:
James Jacobs wrote:
Those are personal names. Nicknames would be things like Cutter or Skywise or the like, yeah.

An ElfQuest shoutout????

You made my day :)

Are you an ElfQuest fan?

I absolutely am!

Paizo Employee Creative Director

2 people marked this as a favorite.
Thomas Seitz wrote:

Dear James Jacobs,

Will we see more about the history behind Grandmaster Torch? Also was it always intended that the Decemvirate have bad apples in their midst?

Grandmaster Torch's story is a great example of an NPC growing organically from the results of years of play and feedback and growth in the PFS Organized Play campaign. Keep an eye and an ear to that game for future developments there...


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Lost Omens, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber
James Jacobs wrote:
Marc Radle wrote:
James Jacobs wrote:
Those are personal names. Nicknames would be things like Cutter or Skywise or the like, yeah.

An ElfQuest shoutout????

You made my day :)

Are you an ElfQuest fan?

I absolutely am!

What is or was ElfQuest?

Paizo Employee Creative Director

2 people marked this as a favorite.
captain yesterday wrote:
James Jacobs wrote:
Marc Radle wrote:
James Jacobs wrote:
Those are personal names. Nicknames would be things like Cutter or Skywise or the like, yeah.

An ElfQuest shoutout????

You made my day :)

Are you an ElfQuest fan?

I absolutely am!
What is or was ElfQuest?

Comic books with VERY pretty art and cool stories about elves and their ordeals against humans and trolls and other elves and Madcoil. Which I read ravenously as a kid, and had a LOT of influence on how I did elves in my homebrew, and thus a LOT of influence on Pahtfinder's elves. Particularly the fact that they're aliens.


James Jacobs wrote:
It was one of the original core goals of the game's reworking—to give more agency to GMs.

I guess I'm not sure exactly what you and others mean by this. Does more "GM agency" mean less of players saying "you can't stop my character from doing X because the rules say I can do it," or conversely, "you can't do X to my character because the rules say you can't"?

Does more "GM agency" result from a fuzzier set of rules where they are more explict calls for GM choice such the GM's ability to chose what skill to use for initiative checks (pp. 498-9 of the 2e CRB)?

Totally not trying to be picky or argumentative, just trying to get a sense of what this means using some specific, operational examples.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Lost Omens, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber
James Jacobs wrote:
captain yesterday wrote:
James Jacobs wrote:
Marc Radle wrote:
James Jacobs wrote:
Those are personal names. Nicknames would be things like Cutter or Skywise or the like, yeah.

An ElfQuest shoutout????

You made my day :)

Are you an ElfQuest fan?

I absolutely am!
What is or was ElfQuest?
Comic books with VERY pretty art and cool stories about elves and their ordeals against humans and trolls and other elves and Madcoil. Which I read ravenously as a kid, and had a LOT of influence on how I did elves in my homebrew, and thus a LOT of influence on Pahtfinder's elves. Particularly the fact that they're aliens.

Wow! Thank you! I thought I recognized it! I read it occasionally at the bookstore in our area, my brother never let me read his Dragon magazines (he was kind of a jerk which did a lot to drive me away from D&D until I had kids and rediscovered it when 3.5 came out).

Is there any other media that had a big influence on how ancestries in your Homebrew were shaped (other than Lovecraft, that is).

Also, I love what you've done with elves.


Hey James, would this be an accurate depiction of a fight between Valeros and Ramsay Bolton?

(Or what happens when you put a tabletop rpg PC against a low fantasy character.)

Paizo Employee Creative Director

7 people marked this as a favorite.
pjrogers wrote:
James Jacobs wrote:
It was one of the original core goals of the game's reworking—to give more agency to GMs.

I guess I'm not sure exactly what you and others mean by this. Does more "GM agency" mean less of players saying "you can't stop my character from doing X because the rules say I can do it," or conversely, "you can't do X to my character because the rules say you can't"?

Does more "GM agency" result from a fuzzier set of rules where they are more explict calls for GM choice such the GM's ability to chose what skill to use for initiative checks (pp. 498-9 of the 2e CRB)?

Totally not trying to be picky or argumentative, just trying to get a sense of what this means using some specific, operational examples.

What I mean by "GM Agency" is building a game where the GM feels allowed by the game to make decisions for the game they want to run without being "bullied" by players who use rules resources against their GM and usurping control over the meta of the game. It's an attempt to get to a place where the GM gets to make the big decisions. In a best case scenario, the GM listens to their players and builds a game the players want, but shouldn't feel compelled our bound to allow each and every rule option in the game.

Regardless of what ANY rulebook in 1st edition actually said, there's a perception that GMs don't have as many tools to control the meta of the game, and that players had that control. That's what we're trying to change. We're trying to support the GM with rules and language that empower them to be the boss, referee, and master of the game.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

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captain yesterday wrote:
Is there any other media that had a big influence on how ancestries in your Homebrew were shaped (other than Lovecraft, that is).

A lot. From Godzilla to John Carpenter to Greyhawk to Fritz Leiber to Elfquest to my home town of Point Arena to Stephen King to Clive Barker to Fighting Fantasy books to Algernon Blackwood to Raymond Feist to my high school friends to all the other horror movies I saw growing up and much more. Check out the appendix in the Gamemastery Guide for a lot of these influences.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Voltron64 wrote:

Hey James, would this be an accurate depiction of a fight between Valeros and Ramsay Bolton?

(Or what happens when you put a tabletop rpg PC against a low fantasy character.)

Stopped watching cause the art style was gross, so I can't say.

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

Does Queen Cressida Kroft have the authority to repeal the article of Korvosa's Charter that outlaws the formation of guilds and possibly trade unions?


Can a fiend demigod be served by fiends that belong to a different "faction"?
The reason I ask is that I homebrewed a sahkil tormentor. One of his themes is flies and maggots and he is also closely associated with kids, so zebub devils seem like ideal minions to him. But sahkils and devils even have different alignments (NE and LE respectively), so I'm not sure this is possible from the "canon" standpoint.

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 32

With the time you have to spend dealing with this thread, how do you have any personal life left? :)


James Jacobs wrote:
Voltron64 wrote:

Hey James, would this be an accurate depiction of a fight between Valeros and Ramsay Bolton?

(Or what happens when you put a tabletop rpg PC against a low fantasy character.)

Stopped watching cause the art style was gross, so I can't say.

Basically, a speedblitz. He moves so fast, the other guy doesn't even notice their arm got cut off before being told so.

Liberty's Edge

James,
I know it is way too early to go into details, but can you talk a little bit about the flavor of witch patrons in 2E?


Paizo Superscriber; Pathfinder Companion, Pathfinder Accessories, PF Special Edition, Starfinder Accessories, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber

What's the regional language in Isger?

Silver Crusade

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

Looking over the allowed alignments, I notice that Nethys could technically have Redeemer Champions.

How do you envision those functioning?


In Iron Gods do any of the smaller ships, like the one under Torch, have unique names or should they mostly be considered to be designated something like Divinity Habitat B3?


What constitutes free will in Pathfinder (specifically as it pertains to infernal contracts)?

Paizo Employee Creative Director

3 people marked this as a favorite.
Archpaladin Zousha wrote:
Does Queen Cressida Kroft have the authority to repeal the article of Korvosa's Charter that outlaws the formation of guilds and possibly trade unions?

Yes, and she probably should.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

3 people marked this as a favorite.
Zum-Graat wrote:

Can a fiend demigod be served by fiends that belong to a different "faction"?

The reason I ask is that I homebrewed a sahkil tormentor. One of his themes is flies and maggots and he is also closely associated with kids, so zebub devils seem like ideal minions to him. But sahkils and devils even have different alignments (NE and LE respectively), so I'm not sure this is possible from the "canon" standpoint.

First off... when you homebrew, what you do is up to you. As long as it makes sense to you, go for it. Doesn't matter what I say.

It's certainly possible from a canonical standpoint for a demigod to be served by creatures of different alignments though. Possible, but rare. Lamashtu, for example, in 1st edition, was served by barghests.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

4 people marked this as a favorite.
Lord Fyre wrote:
With the time you have to spend dealing with this thread, how do you have any personal life left? :)

The time I spend answering questions on this thread amounts to about an average of 10 to 15 minutes a day, if that. So... yeah. Not that I've got much of a personal life to worry about! :P

Paizo Employee Creative Director

Voltron64 wrote:
James Jacobs wrote:
Voltron64 wrote:

Hey James, would this be an accurate depiction of a fight between Valeros and Ramsay Bolton?

(Or what happens when you put a tabletop rpg PC against a low fantasy character.)

Stopped watching cause the art style was gross, so I can't say.
Basically, a speedblitz. He moves so fast, the other guy doesn't even notice their arm got cut off before being told so.

Then no. That's boring. I prefer to avoid boring.

But also, please make sure to post questions when you post to this thread.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

7 people marked this as a favorite.
Paladinosaur wrote:

James,

I know it is way too early to go into details, but can you talk a little bit about the flavor of witch patrons in 2E?

You're right, it's way too early.

I'm pushing HARD for the word to make sense, though. If we keep "patron" then witches need actual real things to be patrons off. Not "nature" but "Gozreh." Not "winter" but "Baba Yaga." Not "agility" but "Black Butterfly." Not "trickery" but "Pazuzu."

If the design team doesn't want that, then they can't use the word "patron" for a witch's focus or inspiration or tradition. They'll need to use a word like "focus" or "inspiration" or "tradition".

Personally, I like the idea of having another spellcaster in the mix who has something they serve/work for/follow.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

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Ed Reppert wrote:
What's the regional language in Isger?

Same as it always has been, when we listed it (and all other regional languages) in Inner Sea World Guide. Common, I believe.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Rysky wrote:

Looking over the allowed alignments, I notice that Nethys could technically have Redeemer Champions.

How do you envision those functioning?

Haven't really looked into how redeemers work, but assuming that Nethys does allow NG, then a Nethysian redeemer would probably focus on redeeming evil arcane spellcasters and seek to get them to abandon the use of their evil ways.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

1 person marked this as a favorite.
LievreOkami wrote:
In Iron Gods do any of the smaller ships, like the one under Torch, have unique names or should they mostly be considered to be designated something like Divinity Habitat B3?

They had unique names but they're pretty much lost to time.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

2 people marked this as a favorite.
RumoWolpertinger wrote:

What constitutes free will in Pathfinder (specifically as it pertains to infernal contracts)?

A complex question. To start, note that there's basically 4 categories of creatures.

Immortal: These are fiends and celestials and other 'were once called outsiders' creatures. They don't have free will in most cases, since they are defined by their nature, and their bodies and souls are merged completely. (Exceptions exist; once an outsider abandons their nature and is a different alignment, they have free will.)

Construct: Robots and golems and the like. Creations with no personality or soul of their own. They do not have free will, except again in rare cases where they become awakened or gain a soul and thus have an alignment other than Neutral and can make their own choices. At which point they have free will.

Undead: Theses have free will if they are intelligent. Mindless undead like zombies don't have free will.

Mortals: This is everything else. All mortals have free will as long as they are intelligent enough to make choices (and thus have alignments and be able to understand language). Animals and the like don't have free will, at least as far as the topic of this discussion is concerned.

In ALL cases, you need to be sapient and capable of making choices beyond the instinctual for yourself to have free will. An animal can't do this unless it's awakened, for example.

So... if you're able to make choices, AND you fit into the above categories, you have the free will to sign an infernal contract and thus sign away your soul for a boon in your pre-judgement life.


2 people marked this as a favorite.
James Jacobs wrote:
...It's certainly possible from a canonical standpoint for a demigod to be served by creatures of different alignments though. Possible, but rare. Lamashtu, for example, in 1st edition, was served by barghests.

In one of the Oblivion Oath: Character Preview videos, Owen K.C. Stephens mentioned his goblin sorcerer Qundle's belief in a good/neutral grey wolf (barghest) and his personal goal to find/follow this wolf to offset the influence of the "red wolves" (the evil hero god barghests).

Can you confirm or refute whether a new non-evil barghest/grey wolf patron of goblins has appeared/will be appearing in PF2E canon?

Paizo Employee Creative Director

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Pillbug Toenibbler wrote:
James Jacobs wrote:
...It's certainly possible from a canonical standpoint for a demigod to be served by creatures of different alignments though. Possible, but rare. Lamashtu, for example, in 1st edition, was served by barghests.

In one of the Oblivion Oath: Character Preview videos, Owen K.C. Stephens mentioned his goblin sorcerer Qundle's belief in a good/neutral grey wolf (barghest) and his personal goal to find/follow this wolf to offset the influence of the "red wolves" (the evil hero god barghests).

Can you confirm or refute whether a new non-evil barghest/grey wolf patron of goblins has appeared/will be appearing in PF2E canon?

This is the first I've heard of this, having not watched Oblivion Oath nor being much involved at all with the game. And since Owen's no longer at Paizo, that's one fewer champion to push this into canon. In time, perhaps, it might have been fun to roll that quest for Owen's character into the greater context of that campaign, at which point it might have made it into canon in time... but that's not what happened, alas.

I've no plans or desire to have a good barghest in the game. For the moment, I'm more interested in non-evil goblins being a rarity (remember, even if all 4 players in your game pick goblins for their characters... PCs are still among the most rare of all creatures in your game!), and as such, those who have faith should worship other deities.

We might develop a neutral or good goblin deity some day, but not today.


Hello James!

What would you think of converting Starfinder classes and weapons for use in Pathfinder 2nd Edition? I just like the way math interacts in PF2 better, and have been idly considering converting stuff.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

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Benjamin Medrano wrote:

Hello James!

What would you think of converting Starfinder classes and weapons for use in Pathfinder 2nd Edition? I just like the way math interacts in PF2 better, and have been idly considering converting stuff.

That's a LOT of work. At this point, I'd probably prefer to just play Starfinder using Starfinder rules since that means I'd get to play that game sooner than later.

Up to you though.


Are there any plans which you may speak of at this time to fill out the holes in casting? (Prepared Occult, Spontaneous locked to the other three, and the two essence pairings not used [Matter/Spirit, Mind/Life if I'm reading it correctly]).

Sorry if this counts as two questions, but if you may speak of such plans, can you give any examples?

Paizo Employee Creative Director

james014Aura wrote:

Are there any plans which you may speak of at this time to fill out the holes in casting? (Prepared Occult, Spontaneous locked to the other three, and the two essence pairings not used [Matter/Spirit, Mind/Life if I'm reading it correctly]).

Sorry if this counts as two questions, but if you may speak of such plans, can you give any examples?

No comment at this time.


Is there a general X% of the population are casters of Y tradition, or table for how frequently a random person might be a certain class category (martial, skill, caster)?


James Jacobs wrote:
So... if you're able to make choices, AND you fit into the above categories, you have the free will to sign an infernal contract and thus sign away your soul for a boon in your pre-judgement life.

Would a spellcaster under a feeblemind spell that is manipulated physically or mentally (via dominate person or possession and the like) to sign an infernal contract count? :)


Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber

Sorry if I missed it, but is Cassandalee an "official" deity in 2e? And if so how prevalent is her faith at the onset of the new edition?

Paizo Employee Creative Director

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james014Aura wrote:
Is there a general X% of the population are casters of Y tradition, or table for how frequently a random person might be a certain class category (martial, skill, caster)?

Not really, but it's a tiny number. I generally don't like nailing those percentages down since it implies limits on creativity when it comes to writing adventures.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

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GM PDK wrote:
James Jacobs wrote:
So... if you're able to make choices, AND you fit into the above categories, you have the free will to sign an infernal contract and thus sign away your soul for a boon in your pre-judgement life.
Would a spellcaster under a feeblemind spell that is manipulated physically or mentally (via dominate person or possession and the like) to sign an infernal contract count? :)

Nope. "Free will" means "Not forced."

Paizo Employee Creative Director

3 people marked this as a favorite.
Jareth Elirae wrote:
Sorry if I missed it, but is Cassandalee an "official" deity in 2e? And if so how prevalent is her faith at the onset of the new edition?

She is. Not very prevalent though. Not yet, at least, but not every deity's faith needs to be all over the place.

Certainly "prevalent" enough that you don't need to jump through hoops to be a PC worshiper of her.


James Jacobs wrote:
GM PDK wrote:
James Jacobs wrote:
So... if you're able to make choices, AND you fit into the above categories, you have the free will to sign an infernal contract and thus sign away your soul for a boon in your pre-judgement life.
Would a spellcaster under a feeblemind spell that is manipulated physically or mentally (via dominate person or possession and the like) to sign an infernal contract count? :)
Nope. "Free will" means "Not forced."

What if the devils are fooled and believe the victim was under their free will? would they seek remedy within Pharasma's courts?

Grand Lodge

Dear James Jacobs,

This is a question from the Chinese players, as the 2e press on we are discussing the class mechanism on this side. May you kindly explain a bit about the nature of the "focus points" of certain spellcaster classes?

Is it a spiritual/psychology state of "mind focus", or it is a method of focused training/activity, like the old Weapon Focus feat? Or something else totally?

Thank you.


So what movies have you seen lately?


Hi James.

A question about improvised weapon

Improvisational focus make me proficient with an improvised weapon.

Now weapon focus prerequisite

Prerequisites: Proficiency with selected weapon, base attack bonus +1.

Is the improvised weapon still considered an object or it count as a weapon for the prerequisite?

Can a gloomblade fighter with improvisational focus create that improvised weapon? Cause by raw improvised weapon are "objects" not melee "weapons"

Paizo Employee Creative Director

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GM PDK wrote:
James Jacobs wrote:
GM PDK wrote:
James Jacobs wrote:
So... if you're able to make choices, AND you fit into the above categories, you have the free will to sign an infernal contract and thus sign away your soul for a boon in your pre-judgement life.
Would a spellcaster under a feeblemind spell that is manipulated physically or mentally (via dominate person or possession and the like) to sign an infernal contract count? :)
Nope. "Free will" means "Not forced."
What if the devils are fooled and believe the victim was under their free will? would they seek remedy within Pharasma's courts?

Devils should do their research, but in a case where they're fooled, they lose out on the benefits and the mortal gains the bonus from the contract for "free." Some devils may well contest that ruling in the Boneyard, sure. This is one of the classic devil stories, after all.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

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Sha-dow wrote:

Dear James Jacobs,

This is a question from the Chinese players, as the 2e press on we are discussing the class mechanism on this side. May you kindly explain a bit about the nature of the "focus points" of certain spellcaster classes?

Is it a spiritual/psychology state of "mind focus", or it is a method of focused training/activity, like the old Weapon Focus feat? Or something else totally?

Thank you.

"Focus points" are another way of saying "Magic points." They represent your inner magic "battery" for using focus spells and the like. Has nothting to do with Weapon Focus, where the word "focus" is used instead to convey the idea that you've specialized your training on that weapon.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

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Dragon78 wrote:
So what movies have you seen lately?

Crawl: Super fun and entertaining.

Midsommer: Amazing and astounding!
Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark: Not bad but not edgy enough. I wish it'd focused on the stories rather than so much on the wrap-around.
Hobbes and Shaw: Very entertaining! More, please.
Once Upon a Time in Hollywood: Brilliant!

Paizo Employee Creative Director

patrizio palluzzi wrote:

Hi James.

A question about improvised weapon

Improvisational focus make me proficient with an improvised weapon.

Now weapon focus prerequisite

Prerequisites: Proficiency with selected weapon, base attack bonus +1.

Is the improvised weapon still considered an object or it count as a weapon for the prerequisite?

Can a gloomblade fighter with improvisational focus create that improvised weapon? Cause by raw improvised weapon are "objects" not melee "weapons"

In cases like this I prefer to look at the end result rather than the rules; if the goal is something fun that supports a thematic in-world thing that makes sense, then I tend to let it go. If it feels like someone trying to do an end-run around the rules and using pedantics to cheat ahead, I don't. Sometimes the "cheat ahead" is unintentional. My advice is to talk to your GM and be open to having their ruling be revised down the road if things don't work out the way it was intended.

If you want to gain weapon focus with a specific improvised weapon, like a chair or a heavy book or a broken bottle, I would allow that, but you'd have to pick the SPECIFIC improvised weapon. You wouldn't gain that bonus to anything you picked up. Only bar stools or dead fish or window panes or whatever weapon you selected as your improvised weapon. And it wouldn't make that improvised weapon any more sturdy—it'd still be a shabby second-best to an actual weapon, physically speaking.

How that interacts with a gloomblade and stuff I can't say. Your best bet there is to talk to your GM.

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