High-Level Guide Book?


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I was wondering if Paizo has any plans (or any interest at all) in making a guide book for high-level play, in a similar vein as the GameMastery Guide. Getting together experience game designers who can help GMs and players create a fun and sustainable high-level campaign.

I enjoy starting out low-level and growing my character, but getting all the way to mid-teens level is a long and arduous road, and too often my group never makes it for various reasons. Sometimes I just want to be in a campaign where the PCs are the major powers in the realm do all sorts of crazy things, and to get that, sometimes you just have to start a campaign already at high-levels. But designing a high-level campaign seems like a different beast from a low-level one, and high-level Pathfinder is... complex to say the least.

What I imagine would go into a high-level guide:


  • advice about how to make high-level challenges and scenarios (e.g. how to make encounters challenging and interesting even if players have teleportation or divination abilities)
  • or how to make challenges and puzzles that aren't easily overcome by high character stats (e.g. creating political challenges, dungeon puzzles that can't be overcome with wish spells, etc.)
  • how to avoid or deal with pitfalls from high-level abilities (e.g. how to deal with "broken" builds, or how to make encounters that challenge even them)
  • what high-level powers to take into consideration when world-building (e.g. how is culture changed when mortals are capable of resurrecting the dead, what strategies are used in war when a small group of six people can take on a whole army?)
  • sample high-level traps/poisons/curses/diseases that are deadly, but also interesting, both in their effects and how to cure them (like a poison that only some of the effects can be stopped by a cure poison spell, but require more complex methods of fully healing)
  • stat blocks for high-level NPCs
  • advice and techniques to make high-level combat more quicker
  • advice on making high-level character backstory

Basically, I'd like to see a book that answers the question 'What do I need to consider when running a high-level campaign?'

Actually, going through the GameMastery Guide again, I see that some of this stuff was already address, but maybe we can go more in-depth? Specifically address certain individual or combination of spells and abilities that make some challenges trivial? Imagine a section like the Player Interaction section from GMG, except for high-level builds like CoDzilla.

Um, I guess what I'm really asking for is GameMastery Guide 2: High-Level Edition.

Any interest in a book like that?


Hmmm... A book merely devoted to advice on getting from level 10 to 20 just seems a very specific and narrow focus. I can't imagine a whole book to be devoted to it, nor a real demand for it. Especially with the question of a Epic-level book being one that gets tossed around a lot here, and seemingly never answered to everybody's satisfaction.


The game starts to break down at later levels as magic becomes ultimate power and the divine between classes gets greater and greater, so it might be difficult to write about it.

Or are we talking about mythic/epic?


No, I was thinking levels 10-20. As you say, the game starts to break down, or has a big potential to at least. But if that's the case, then there's even a bigger need to for a guide about addressing these issues that come up, issues that get in the way of enjoying a high-level game.

Classes go up to level 20. I just think it's a complete waste of half of the content if we can't get as much play from high-level games as we do from low-level. Why are we aiming for epic levels when we already have such a hard time with the teen levels?


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

I'd be a big fan of a book like this. It's come up before and although I don't remember a paizonite endorsing such a book, I don't think they've ruled it out either.

I was hoping there might be a chapter of ultimate campaign on this topic. It might be hard to fit it into the rule book line, since an entire hardcover might be more space than is really required..

Paizo Employee Creative Director

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I've been wanting to do a book like this for a bit—but it wouldn't stop at giving advice to players. The focus of the book would be on providing advice to GMs on how to run high level games AND on how to create high level adventures, with a lot of handy charts and stuff to make the high level game running easier.

Let us know you want a book like this and its chances of being created improve!

Contributor

1 person marked this as a favorite.

I want a book like this. Please improve its chances of being created.

Shadow Lodge

1 person marked this as a favorite.

I want a book like this with every ounce of my being.


I believe a book like this is greatly needed. So yes, by all means, please.


I know at least 3 people besides myself that would very likely buy a book that covers high level play *well*.


You may add my vote for a book of this type. Anything that makes GM'ing easier and removes the frustration is always welcome from my point of view.


Add another vote for this book.


+1. a book like this would be a bless.


I have been GMing for thirty years and I would LOVE this book. Definite purchase.

I would draw the line at hugging and kissing it and calling it George, though.


James Jacobs wrote:

I've been wanting to do a book like this for a bit—but it wouldn't stop at giving advice to players. The focus of the book would be on providing advice to GMs on how to run high level games AND on how to create high level adventures, with a lot of handy charts and stuff to make the high level game running easier.

Let us know you want a book like this and its chances of being created improve!

Yes please! This is exactly what I had in mind. Thanks for your input, Mr. Jacobs, I hope you get the support needed to make this book!

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber
James Jacobs wrote:

I've been wanting to do a book like this for a bit—but it wouldn't stop at giving advice to players. The focus of the book would be on providing advice to GMs on how to run high level games AND on how to create high level adventures, with a lot of handy charts and stuff to make the high level game running easier.

Let us know you want a book like this and its chances of being created improve!

I'd love to see how you'd do this book. It sounds like a needed followup to the GameMastery Guide and Ultimate Campaign. (Which kind of fails in the "Ultimate" if I can infer from this statement that it doesn't address high level play.)

Sovereign Court

Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Adventure, Companion, Lost Omens Subscriber

Yes I want a book like this.


Its got my vote.


While I usually don't like the GM aid books, I probably would pick up this one.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Rulebook, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

A book like this would be a godsend. Advice and suggestions on how to provide challenges to higher-level parties, which spells to keep an eye on, how to scale a plot, maybe a few more non-Large+ monsters for the high-end game. Yeah, that sort of thing would go into my "must have now" pile.

Liberty's Edge

I need this book. A lot of my campaigns in the past 15 years or so have gone to high levels and beyond.

Dark Archive

The charts would be the selling point for me. I have GMed enough to be able to create my own campaigns ect. If you also included an Updated GM screen with the book, now that would just be real cool.


Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

PLEASE Paizo, make a book like this!

(Also, this helps to pave the way for an epic book further down the road!)


I'd buy it.


My gaming group absolutely loves high level play. We have a five man group at 14th level going through Rappan Athuk right now. The whole group would definitely be in line to buy a book devoted to pro tips, insider insight, and proven techniques for stream-lining high level play!


I would support this and buy it.


I'd buy it.

-TimD


Pathfinder Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

This is probably one of the few potential books ive heard mentioned for he paizo rpg line that i would consider picking up in hard cover form. So far the last few releases have been mostly lackluster and havent been buys. I'd love to have a reason to pick up another hardcover again and this would be one.


Please!!!! Please!!!! Please!!!!!(Imploring puppy eyes) The group is at 15th level and is very dedicated to the campaign. We are on our way to finishing Carrion Crown and want to continue on after the adventure path. While there are several great ideas for continuing the campaign I'm about to wing it from this point out. A book on designing and running high level campaigns would be so appreciated.

Thank you for suggesting that we need to beg for the book James =D Would lots of chocolate chip cookies help sway the Great and Mighty Powers That Be?

Please??????


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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

James I've seen you ask for support votes like this in the past on other potential products from fans like me and honestly I almost missed this post. I'm betting many do. I would love it if you guys ran some polls on projects like this you've been mulling over but in a place where we can easily find it and vote on it.

Just my two cents.


Adventure Path Charter Subscriber

+1


I already thought a thread had been done like this before indicating that there was big demand for such a book.

Well, hopefully with a second thread now indicating even more interest they put this one on the schedule. I would love a high-level hardcover.


+100!!!

Owner - House of Books and Games LLC

Hell yes!

Back in mid-2011 there was a Pathfinder RPG in Three Years "poll" thread that indicated a book like this would be a big hit, and that was even before Mythic was formally announced.

As of August, a bunch of people had voiced optinions; near-final tally is here.. But here's the top 10:

voting wrote:

As of [August 3, 2011], 62 people have posted something that could be interpreted as votes; here's the results (the number in parentheses is the number of votes).

    Tallies:
    1. (40) 21+-level Rulebook
    2. (38) Gamemastery Guide 2 (levels 12-20, kingdom building, organizations, etc.)
    2. (33) Bestiary 4
    4. (31) Ultimate Adventure/Scoundrel (skill-based adventuring, classes and equipment)
    5. (24) Ultimate Psionics
    6. (17) Pathfinder Alternative/Optional Rules
    7. (16) Advanced Players Guide 2 (classes, prestige classes, and additional material) ... I'm lumping "Ultimate Feats" in with this.
    8. (12) Advanced Companion Guide
    9. (10) Kingdom Sourcebook (includes war/mass combat)
    10. (9) Rise of the Runelords Hardcover (and other hardcover mega-adventures)

Now given that at the time, nobody conceived of something like the Mythic Adventures book that's been announced, it's hard to say what a current poll might look like, but it's curious that to some extent 5 of the 10, in some form, are either out or announced.

Personally, I'm still shooting for a Monster Toolbox book for the GM, but I think I'm in the minority.


I would buy this!


Thanks Gbonehead. I was trying to remember what the other thread was.

It was that thread that showed big interest for a high-level campaign guide with stronghold building and other campaign stuff.

I remember talk at the time being that a high-level book would be an excellent hardcover to do before tackling Epic/Mythic to help some people get a better handle on those sorts of games first.

Which is why I was sort of confused when Ultimate Campaign was announced right before Mythic. At first I assumed it would be their high-level guidebook, it was certainly an excellent opportunity for it and it even included some of the stuff that was asked for in a high-level hardcover. But then it wasn't.

I'm still pumped about Ultimate Campaign and can't wait to pick it up but now more than ever we need a high-level hardcover. There's clearly a lot of demand for this, more than pretty much anything else at this point. Paizo's question of whether this would sell, I think, has more than been answered after all the discussion about such a book over the last two years.


James Jacobs wrote:

I've been wanting to do a book like this for a bit—but it wouldn't stop at giving advice to players. The focus of the book would be on providing advice to GMs on how to run high level games AND on how to create high level adventures, with a lot of handy charts and stuff to make the high level game running easier.

Let us know you want a book like this and its chances of being created improve!

Not that I'm selective about what I buy, but I'd buy this.


Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

Would buy this in a heartbeat!


Bruunwald wrote:
Hmmm... A book merely devoted to advice on getting from level 10 to 20 just seems a very specific and narrow focus. I can't imagine a whole book to be devoted to it, nor a real demand for it. Especially with the question of a Epic-level book being one that gets tossed around a lot here, and seemingly never answered to everybody's satisfaction.

It maybe needed though to get to level 21+. Apparently the math starts to really break down level 13+. Things likes saves get to being auto win or auto lose. This could fix that and allow for the epic book to come out next.


Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber

Would definitely be interested in a book like this.


I would definitely want a book like this. +1!

Silver Crusade

Considering I'm running Spires of Xin-Shalast and the party is near the end, such a book would be greatly appreciated. My player's have expressed interest in continuing beyond the end of the AP (assuming they all survive). Was a bit ify on having to create challenges to repel the firepower of an 18th level party magnitude...

If it helps, the book doesn't need to be a 250 page hardback. Even a 64 page Pathfinder Campaign sized book would be much appreciated.

On a side note, as a GM, I'm beginning to appreciate the saving throw disparity that comes with high level play. When the wizards get uppity, it's always nice to say "make a Fortitude save" and watch their faces get completely crestfallen. It's actually more fun than when the paladin archer smites evil, and I say "It's not evil, it's neutral" and see him recalculate everything because he didn't expect to be fighting non-evil giants. :-)


I would be hugely interested in a book such as this.


I think this is one of the best ideas in a long while. Definitely interested in this. Take my money.

Also, idk if there is something already out there, but some book or article to cover the power level titles. A 15th level monk is what exactly, a high monk/master/8th Dan? Or a 13th lvl ranger is a warden for a local forest with certain titles? This is part of the overall need for this new book for higher level campaigns.


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

I would buy the hell out of this. I often want to play campaigns where the PCs have the literal power to move Heaven and Earth to achieve their goals, but the game turns into wacky rocket tag so fast at these levels that it's usually more trouble than it's worth. If there was a book to help fix this madness, then as is so very often the case, my money would be yours.


As long as it covered PAST 20 as well, that's fine, I'd buy it. No sense in having a book specifically for high level play unless it covers the hard stuff.

Basically, I want a book that allows PC's to logically combat the upper level beasties, the highest ones you guys offer. What's the point of having giant monsters if nobody can ever fight them?

for spellcasters, I would be happy with just having more metamagic spell levels so I can actually apply all those fancy metamagic feats you guys have but few actually can use.

Liberty's Edge

I would be interested. High level play is adored by my group. They like to get to level 20 and keep on going past that with characters.

I have a player who is going to GM and he would be interested as he is thinking of pushing into that once I finish another campaign


That looks like a very great idea! I am running my first 1-20 campaign now. The party is at level 3. :)


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Just going to put my vote in here for something along these lines. Yeah, I'd buy it. I've been doing this sort of stuff on my own for years but seeing someone elses view on things is always good. And for those who are just starting it'd be a godsend.

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