Question for the masses: losing steam on new ideas?


Pathfinder First Edition General Discussion

Liberty's Edge

Ok so I have been playing Pathfinders for a few years now and I am loving this system.
That being said I gotta saw is it just me or are the creators kinda losing steam on new ideas? I can understand that there is so fine lines they have to avoid with stuff so that they don’t get in trouble with wizards of the coast.
Now what I mean by losing steam is in the area of classes. I may be far off base in this but I don’t think they have or will come out with a new class or even new archetypes for a long while. I don’t like this because there are some classes that have little to no archetypes and I would love to more come out.
Does anyone else feel like Paizo is avoiding this by coming out with more campaign modules or am I alone?


Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Maps, Pathfinder Accessories, PF Special Edition Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Starfinder Superscriber

I think you might be right about the issue but mistaken as to the cause.

In my view they are being careful to avoid bloating the system too rapidly (rather than skirting any conflict with WotC - if there were to be legal repercussions, I think they would have happened by now). A new class will be introduced when it's needed rather than because it's time for another base class. (I'd expect some more base classes if and when they do Psychic Magic, for example. Perhaps also when the Numeria AP comes out. It seems to me that those are the trigger points, rather than some prescribed 'rate of release').

Of course, my interest is pretty heavily skewed towards the production of more campaign material and adventures. So it's possible I'm just seeing what I want to see.

Liberty's Edge

See I can understand that, I am looking more towards more archetypes really cause i am happy with the amount of classes out there and when you point it out like you have it makes sense.

However it doesnt change the matter that they do seem to be dancing around it by adding more campaigns (which i love them) and while i dont mind the flush out of the world/universe cause it gives DM's more ammo for there homebrew kit.

Overall I just feel like they are dancing around cause they dont know what to do next.


Archetypes are still coming out in companions and even AP's. The most recent volume of Reign of Winter has a new archetype for instance, and I think the new Kobold book has some archetypes.


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Stalarious wrote:

See I can understand that, I am looking more towards more archetypes really cause i am happy with the amount of classes out there and when you point it out like you have it makes sense.

However it doesnt change the matter that they do seem to be dancing around it by adding more campaigns (which i love them) and while i dont mind the flush out of the world/universe cause it gives DM's more ammo for there homebrew kit.

Overall I just feel like they are dancing around cause they dont know what to do next.

You may well be right (I'd be quite happy if they never produced another rule, so perhaps my bias towards flavor material over mechanics means I'm not be seeing it).

From my perspective though, I want them to only produce an Archetype when they "know what to do next". The alternative seems to me to be extra options just for their own sake, which I think is likely a recipe for lower quality.

Having said that, I've never liked prestige classes but am a huge fan of Paths of Prestige (prestige classes done right, in my opinion). Maybe a similar Archetype book might be useful..?

Liberty's Edge

The Pathfinder RPG has expanded in chunks. Year one (CRB and Bestiary 1) was pure revision of 3.5 content, with minimal new ideas. Year two was dedicated to new ways of thinking about classic tropes (GMG, APG). Year three was mostly broad character options (Ultimate Magic, Ultimate Combat) with significant energy spent on mechanically broadening the default setting to other Earth analogues (Ultimate Combat, Bestiary 3). Year four was new races and equipment (ARG, Ultimate Equipment). Year five has been new campaign options (Ultimate Campaign, Mythical Adventures).

There's some crossover between years, but in general each year's hardcover releases fit a certain mindset. Sure, we haven't seen new classes in a while, but we don't need them as much as we did two years ago. Heck, the last new base class still upsets some players. The game mechanics included in the softcovers tend towards whatever suits the book's theme rather than the game's mechanical need.

Grand Lodge

Keep in mind also the billions and gazillions of us who vehemently feel there are already too many classes & archetypes and any more would make it even worse.

Lots of us refused to buy the Ultimate Combat not just because of the inexcusable offal that is the cowboy -- though guns in D&D is reason enough to not even look at the UC -- but another reason we didn't buy is because the Core and the APG, with the addition of the UM, is at least enough and quite frankly, more than enough.
NO MORE!

For the hundreds and tens of gamers who love more and more glut, we hope they are satisfied with 3rd Party Publishers.

Designer, RPG Superstar Judge

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Remember that the PFRPG line only has three books per year. Let's look at the books in that line, probably somewhat out of order:

Core Rulebook: No archetypes, hadn't been invented yet.

Bestiary: ditto.

GameMastery Guide: ditto.

Advanced Player's Guide: had archetypes, it's the first appearance of archetypes in the game.

Bestiary 2: no archetypes, because it's monsters.

Ultimate Magic: had archetypes, because the point of the book was to introduce new options for spellcasting classes.

Ultimate Combat: had archetypes, because the point of the book was to introduce new options for martial-oriented characters.

Bestiary 3: no archetypes, because it's monsters.

Ultimate Equipment: no archetypes, because archetypes aren't equipment.

Advanced Race Guide: had race-specific archetypes, because that makes sense for the book.

NPC Codex: no archetypes, because the point of the book was to provide tons of NPC stat blocks built with the Core Rulebook in order to show there is an incredible variety of character options available just using the core rules.

Ultimate Campaign: no archetypes, because that's not the point of that book (the point is providing new subsystems to handle different aspects of the game)

Mythic Adventures: no archetypes because it's introducing a whole new system of advancing and tweaking your character.

Bestiary 4: no archetypes, because it's monsters.

So of the 14 core releases, 4 (APG, UM, UCom, ARG) have archetypes because those ones are all about tweaking your character class.

Or, to look at the numbers a different way, of the 11 core books since the invention of archetypes, 5 are Bestiary-style books that shouldn't have archetypes in them, and of the remaining 6 books, 4 of them (or 67%) have archetypes. And that's just the core line... the companions line has more, just about every month.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Stalarious wrote:

Ok so I have been playing Pathfinders for a few years now and I am loving this system.

That being said I gotta saw is it just me or are the creators kinda losing steam on new ideas? I can understand that there is so fine lines they have to avoid with stuff so that they don’t get in trouble with wizards of the coast.
Now what I mean by losing steam is in the area of classes. I may be far off base in this but I don’t think they have or will come out with a new class or even new archetypes for a long while. I don’t like this because there are some classes that have little to no archetypes and I would love to more come out.
Does anyone else feel like Paizo is avoiding this by coming out with more campaign modules or am I alone?

It is just you.

No... in fact I see them NOT digging themselves the hole that WOTC did.
We don't need a new splatbook for player munchkinism every month. WOTC would crank out classes by the bushel and simply not support them. It's not like we have a real lack of classes, especially when you multiply them by archetypes. Wizards in it's last years essentially dropped support for GM's and started cranking out nothing but a new set of player toys each month. We stopped getting modules from them, they changed their output on the cynical money decision that there were more players than GMs.


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For more archetypes and class options, there are always 3PP companies that produce material for the Pathfinder ruleset. I develop the Kaidan setting of Japanese horror (PFRPG) as an imprint under Rite Publishing, for example, and that setting has not quite as many archetypes as say the Advanced Players Guide, but there is still a large number of them - all specifically fitting a feudal Japan setting.

That said, even in my personal games running my Kaidan setting, I don't necessarily allow all the other available archetypes as I too do not want to be overwhelmed (bloated) with archetypes and class options, rather only allowing those that best fit the setting and campaign.

While I do rely and possess all the Paizo Pathfinder books, I regularly purchase materials from 3PP companies, and consider all as viable gaming material for Pathfinder. I don't need Paizo to be the exclusive provider of my game material. Why do you?

The Exchange

I agree to a point.....

There are some classes/archetypes I'd like to see only because I want to see those classes or those archetypes, the CG paladin or Arcane Ranger. One of the items I think WOTC did right with 4th was in 4th edition was a cross class system where you can take 1/2 classes and make combinations to make you character and this made the game more modular. I personally think people have a certain idea of a character and hope that classes or archetypes will come out to create the character.

Archetypes are cool because rather than making new classes they make the current classes more modular to allow expansion w/o flooding the game system.


I don't think they're running out of steam, we get new archetypes in many of the companions and even some of the APs, though I don't see a new core book soon(not one that I know of anyway.)I however want quality material, which can be pretty are. Look at the dungeoneering handbook, most of the archetypes in that one are completely useless.

I don't think we'll see any new base classes, though I might enjoy some new playstyles, but again I don't even see any of the ideas for new classes I've seen that look appealing.

I don't think they'd dig themselves a hole by making options. I could usually find nice things in the many splatbooks WOTC had, though there was some hit and miss here and there. I in particular liked some of the extra rules for environment, but YMMV.

Steve Geddes wrote:
Having said that, I've never liked prestige classes but am a huge fan of Paths of Prestige (prestige classes done right, in my opinion). Maybe a similar Archetype book might be useful..?

I disagree about paths of prestige being good. I think paths of prestige was an insult. Its filled with mostly useless prestiges, it makes the same mistakes as 3.5. There's even a prestige in the book only available to one archetype of a class, and even its not very good. It doesn't do anything to fix Pathfinder's hate-on with multiclassing and prestiges.

All that said, There are some very quality 3rd party works and homebrew to look at if your lacking.


LazarX wrote:
Wizards in it's last years essentially dropped support for GM's and started cranking out nothing but a new set of player toys each month. We stopped getting modules from them, they changed their output on the cynical money decision that there were more players than GMs.

While I'm not overly fond of Wizards, the quoted statement simply isn't true (in terms of 3.5, at least).

In 2007-2008, WotC released 4 player-option books, 10 GM-option/setting books, and 11 adventures.

In 2006, WotC released 9 player-option books, 8 GM-option/setting books, and 10 adventures.

In 2005, WotC released 11 player-option books, 8 GM-option/setting books, and 4 adventures.

In 2004, WotC released 8 player-option books, 7 GM-option/setting books, and 2 adventures.

In 2003 (after the three core books), WotC released 3 player-option books, 3 GM-option/setting books, and 0 adventures.

So the GM-specific books were pretty equivalent in number to the player-specific books during all the 3.5 years, and there were more adventures during the last two-and-a-half years than at any point earlier in 3.5's run.

(Note: I placed player-specific setting books, such as "player's guide to faerûn", on the player-option side, plus things like "miniatures handbook" because it contains several new classes)

The Exchange

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To the contrary: I feel that they ran a little too long in terms of adding classes. Nor do I feel that it's a good idea to keep adding more and more player options until the entire system crashes. That's a popular scheme in marketing, but it really isn't compatible with quality game design. The folks at Paizo recognize that the GMs still have to have a reasonable mastery of all the options allowed at their table and there comes a point when any GM will cry out, "Hold, enough!" At which point - most of us have seen this happen with the competition - the "player's option gravy wagon" suddenly dries up.

I do appreciate the occasional (properly play-tested!) new option now and then, as a special treat. We just have to hope Paizo builds its add-ons fairly intelligently, with an eye toward luring in new customers, keeping existing customers interested with new tools for campaigns (as opposed to players), providing balance and interesting new concepts in their pre-made adventures, and a general market philosophy of small but long-term-sustainable profit through repeat customers. That market strategy isn't as easy as it used to be - Erik, Jake and Sean aren't likely to be buying Maseratis for their Italian villas with their annual bonus - but it can still work if you don't... well, flood the market with inferior dreck just to be publishing something.


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I hope they don't release any more classes. Archetypes are ok as long as well playtested.

I would prefer they skip a book in the core line and use that time to do a thorough errata and reprint the 4 core player books (core, apg, um and uc). There are so many questions on these boards about the rules and the way some things interact that it is about time to do this. I'm not asking for a complete pathfinder 1.5 where everyone would be forced to buy new book, just a large clarification/errata.

Someone is bound to ask why this is needed:

Look at all the error or eratta threads. Core and APG aren't so bad, but ultimate magic and ultimate combat were full of typo's, poorly described abilities and imbalanced archetypes. I love both those books, just don't like that some things vary drastically from table to table purely based poor ability descriptions.


Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Maps, Pathfinder Accessories, PF Special Edition Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Starfinder Superscriber
Xarthos Darkblade wrote:
Look at all the error or eratta threads. Core and APG aren't so bad, but ultimate magic and ultimate combat were full of typo's, poorly described abilities and imbalanced archetypes. I love both those books, just don't like that some things vary drastically from table to table purely based poor ability descriptions.

Why does that matter? Isnt that just part of what RPGs are about? It seems to me the DM's (or group's) take on things is a pretty dominant factor in how things are at any given table and although some individual issues may become more uniform, others will still vary drastically. Is that something that needs addressing?

Sovereign Court

Stop being so greedy give us campaign/module guys something for a change!

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Pan wrote:
Stop being so greedy give us campaign/module guys something for a change!

Let's see, annually...

12x AP installments, each at 96 pages = 1 152 p.
12x Campaign Setting books, each at 64 pages = 768 p.
12x Player Companions, each at 32 pages = 384 p.
4x Modules, each at 64 pages = 256 p.
(I'm not even counting PFS Adventures and Fiction!)
TOTAL = 2260 p.

vs.

3-4x Rules Hardcovers, each at 300 pages = ~900-1200 p.
TOTAL = ~900-1200p.

Yeah, Paizo is totally a rules company that neglects adventures and setting material.

Liberty's Edge

I can see most of your guys views and alot of what you have said has given me alot to think about I still feeel that Pazio should at least level the amount of acretypes to at least a similar level across the board for the classes/races. there are some that have virtually no archetypes and I dont understand why they would do that.


Stalarious wrote:

Ok so I have been playing Pathfinders for a few years now and I am loving this system.

That being said I gotta saw is it just me or are the creators kinda losing steam on new ideas? I can understand that there is so fine lines they have to avoid with stuff so that they don’t get in trouble with wizards of the coast.
Now what I mean by losing steam is in the area of classes. I may be far off base in this but I don’t think they have or will come out with a new class or even new archetypes for a long while. I don’t like this because there are some classes that have little to no archetypes and I would love to more come out.
Does anyone else feel like Paizo is avoiding this by coming out with more campaign modules or am I alone?

They said a while back there would not be any new classes. It is not a loss of idea, but a commitment to not bloat the system with new classes. There may be new archtypes later on, but even those add bloat, so it seems that slowing down with those is intentional also.


Stalarious wrote:
I can see most of your guys views and alot of what you have said has given me alot to think about I still feeel that Pazio should at least level the amount of acretypes to at least a similar level across the board for the classes/races. there are some that have virtually no archetypes and I dont understand why they would do that.

They don't have a lot of employees so they can't do everything at once. It seems that new archetypes are not at the top of the list. What I would do is suggest archetypes, such as a unarmed focused cleric, instead of just hoping for more random archetypes.

Liberty's Edge

???? you have my attention wriathstrike how do you suggest archetypes? or for that matter anything to paizo?

Silver Crusade

Personally, I'd rather see more fluff and less crunch. Creating new rules for the sake of creating new rules is madness.

That being said, stuff like Mystery Monsters Revisited, Misfit Monsters Redeemed and Ultimate Campaign (yeah I know, lots of mechanics in it), are more interesting to me.

Second Edition DnD had a lot of good supplements (mostly because of the sturgeon's law principle since they have a buttload of supplements) and the best of these were things about how to do things, as opposed to tables, stats, rules, classes and the crap that 3e supplements had.

3e never had something quite similar to the 1e dungeoneering guide, or even the 2e complete book of necromancers. The Complete Book of Villains and Creative Campaigning, arguably two of the best 2e supplements had basically no rules at all in them. They just explained how to make convincing villains and gave a huge list of ideas on how to design adventures. They were useful for anybody.

The old 2e complete book of paladins had little in the way of kits, and a lot in the way of how a paladin was expected to act.

Personally, I'd rather see Paizo make more supplements based on the hows and whys as opposed to the mechanics.


They don't know what to create next, because the game is already complete. There isn't really much left that isn't already covered.

Ultimate Combat and Ultimate Magic were already stretching it a bit. I hope that from here on, they concentrate even more of their effort on more adventures, monster books, their campaign setting, and so on.

Rules bloat is bad, mkay...


Pathfinder Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

I am pretty happy actually with the status Quo. My group uses alot of 3rd party material. I am perfectly happy picking up expanded class options from 3rd party publishers in small digestible chunks, and leaving big system changing stuff to paizo. Super Genius games in particular has given me a ton of solid classes, and options for existing classes to work with. They come in small pdfs so I can buy what I want, and leave what I dont. I have a couple binders full of 3rd party material (that are slowly being replaced with my kindle).

@stalarious - start a thread. If it gets enough support it will probably turn up somewhere, or at the very least a 3pp will pick it up. Look at the outcry a while back for a 'gish' class. We got the magus, one of the best implementations of that kind of character I have ever seen. It might take time, but paizo listens. And 3pps definately do (with their more agile business models).

RPG Superstar 2013 Top 32

There are only so many times you can relabel a fighter. But you can create new worlds endlessly.

Dark Archive

As stated earlier homebrew is always an option with the system. Only thing stopping it is PFS rules but PFS tries very hard to keep the game fair and the theme with the setting.

PIPE DREAM...

This is my dream core book

I would like to see something like the last superstar where everyone voted in the first round. But round one will be classes and the top 10 that people voted for will go into this book

Then round 2 - 60 archetypes 5 for each current class, people vote & top 60 added to the book

Then feats - round 3

Then spells X number of spells, and top X go into the book

Then magical items

Then prestige classes

Each person can only contribute once and once you have a contribution added to the book from one round you cannot contribute any more. Thus giving more chances for others to contribute.

After being voted on the data goes to the dev team and they make the items balanced and working for the game system

And that is the community core book

Grand Lodge

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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Souphin wrote:

As stated earlier homebrew is always an option with the system. Only thing stopping it is PFS rules but PFS tries very hard to keep the game fair and the theme with the setting.

PIPE DREAM...

This is my dream core book

I would like to see something like the last superstar where everyone voted in the first round. But round one will be classes and the top 10 that people voted for will go into this book

Then round 2 - 60 archetypes 5 for each current class, people vote & top 60 added to the book

Then feats - round 3

Then spells X number of spells, and top X go into the book

Then magical items

Then prestige classes

Each person can only contribute once and once you have a contribution added to the book from one round you cannot contribute any more. Thus giving more chances for others to contribute.

After being voted on the data goes to the dev team and they make the items balanced and working for the game system

And that is the community core book

For extras and addons, something like Superstar is a great way to go. For designing an actual Core system, this would be a disaster. Because quite frankly, the bulk of people who vote on Superstar (like me for instance) have absolutely zilch for talent compared to those who do this for a living and have a track record of putting out quality product that sells.

There are only certain instances where Design by Committe works. There are even fewer working examples of Design By Mob Vote.

(It's rather ironic that I'm posting this right after watching the Sixth Doctor episode. "Vengeance of Varos".


I think Honest the 3rd Party people develop a lot extra class variations... But for what you are talking about. May an Ultimate Class guide where you can develop your class with a clear set of rules like the Ultimate Race guide...

What I would like them to do is take a 1 year off from the books Go thru Clean up everything and release New Edition that clears up a lot of the arguments that go on the forums...

Maybe Ultimate Mechanics... So they can go thru each skill and develop them further for us to get a better understanding and a better use so these forums can get more productive instead of Munchkins in 60% of them

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Reecy wrote:

I think Honest the 3rd Party people develop a lot extra class variations... But for what you are talking about. May an Ultimate Class guide where you can develop your class with a clear set of rules like the Ultimate Race guide...

What I would like them to do is take a 1 year off from the books Go thru Clean up everything and release New Edition that clears up a lot of the arguments that go on the forums...

Maybe Ultimate Mechanics... So they can go thru each skill and develop them further for us to get a better understanding and a better use so these forums can get more productive instead of Munchkins in 60% of them

One... you'd still have arguments about the old set, because half the population will say.. "Screw you! I bought library full of old books I'm not throwing away!"

Two... you'd have additional arguments about all the nits and picks of the new system, because honestly, when has a new system come out for anything that didn't raise arguments. The idea that they could put out a book that settles all questions, isn't grounded by any real world experience.

And then of course you'd have a whole new set of Edition Wars.

So basically you'd have at least three times the armount of arguments you do now.

Silver Crusade

LazarX wrote:
Reecy wrote:

I think Honest the 3rd Party people develop a lot extra class variations... But for what you are talking about. May an Ultimate Class guide where you can develop your class with a clear set of rules like the Ultimate Race guide...

What I would like them to do is take a 1 year off from the books Go thru Clean up everything and release New Edition that clears up a lot of the arguments that go on the forums...

Maybe Ultimate Mechanics... So they can go thru each skill and develop them further for us to get a better understanding and a better use so these forums can get more productive instead of Munchkins in 60% of them

One... you'd still have arguments about the old set, because half the population will say.. "Screw you! I bought library full of old books I'm not throwing away!"

Two... you'd have additional arguments about all the nits and picks of the new system, because honestly, when has a new system come out for anything that didn't raise arguments. The idea that they could put out a book that settles all questions, isn't grounded by any real world experience.

And then of course you'd have a whole new set of Edition Wars.

So basically you'd have at least three times the armount of arguments you do now.

All true! Still, I'd love to see what they could do with a Pathfinder 2.0. Eventually, I guess we'll find out.

In the meantime, 1.0 sure seems to be doing fine!

The Exchange

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Much better than I expected, that's for sure. I remember seeing the CRB for the first time and saying to myself, "Hey, cool! I'd better buy one before they go out of print forever."

Back then, of course, Paizo's business competition had all the name-brand recognition and marketing might on their side. And 3rd-ed offshoots like Arcana Evolved and Iron Heroes had had no luck whatsoever competing with the original 3rd Edition. So you can understand my automatic assumption that this 'Pathfinder' thing would soon be going to the Big Room of Discontinued Games in the Sky...

Liberty's Edge

Well I think ot would have happened to if WoTC didnt create 4th ed and shot themselves in the foot for publishing it.

Silver Crusade

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For folks interested in this sort of thing, you might read through last year's 10th Anniversary retrospectives. I just found them this morning and they make for very interesting reading. Felt like they gave me some good perspective on what Paizo's doing. The more I learn about this company the more I like them.

There are some bits that are directly relevant for the worries here.

Enjoy!


Lincoln Hills wrote:
. And 3rd-ed offshoots like Arcana Evolved and Iron Heroes had had no luck whatsoever competing with the original 3rd Edition.

Iron Heroes problem was itself.

It gave a free form arcane class that was imbalanced (all illusion spells were shadow illusions, so focusing on illusion gives you every spell)
It tried to make three fighter classes (Armiger, Weapon Master, and the other one: of those three only Armiger was decent, it was like they were splitting up Fighter for no reason), a Barbarian, a full BAB rogue, and thief (the non-full BAB skill monkey rogue), etc.

It had the token system, but every class had a different mechanic and tokens don't stack for multiclassing.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion, Rulebook Subscriber
Gorbacz wrote:
Pan wrote:
Stop being so greedy give us campaign/module guys something for a change!

Let's see, annually...

12x AP installments, each at 96 pages = 1 152 p.
12x Campaign Setting books, each at 64 pages = 768 p.
12x Player Companions, each at 32 pages = 384 p.
4x Modules, each at 64 pages = 256 p.
(I'm not even counting PFS Adventures and Fiction!)
TOTAL = 2260 p.

vs.

3-4x Rules Hardcovers, each at 300 pages = ~900-1200 p.
TOTAL = ~900-1200p.

Yeah, Paizo is totally a rules company that neglects adventures and setting material.

I'm content as player and GM with the content mix, but I think your math is off , the players books are mostly rule books, and certainly player centric.

Makes the numbers more even.


Stalarious wrote:
???? you have my attention wriathstrike how do you suggest archetypes? or for that matter anything to paizo?

I would have replied soon but I did not come back until now..

Well you can create a thread asking people for archtypes they would like to see in future products. The devs do browse the threads. :)

Grand Lodge

What about a book/article from someone on How to Design a Balanced Archtype ?

Designer, RPG Superstar Judge

Katt De Grey wrote:
What about a book/article from someone on How to Design a Balanced Archtype ?

Well, I'd start with this.

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