Ask the Pathfinder Tales Tellers all your questions here.


Tales

51 to 100 of 367 << first < prev | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | next > last >>
Shadow Lodge

Dave Gross wrote:
Orthos wrote:
If you could write any one story in Pathfinder/Golarion of your choosing, no restraints, no inhibitions, no limitations except those of the setting itself, what would it be?

I would write a 10-part epic following 20 heroes through an age of war in Tian Xia.

To the delight of dozens.

timpratt wrote:
Orthos wrote:
If you could write any one story in Pathfinder/Golarion of your choosing, no restraints, no inhibitions, no limitations except those of the setting itself, what would it be?
My characters Rodrick and Hrym go through a portal to the Mars-analogue Akiton and have a John Carter-esque style adventure, but with lots more lying and trickery.

Sign me up for both!

Dark Archive Contributor

3 people marked this as a favorite.
Kajehase wrote:
And just to stay on topic, a question: Semi-colons, how do you feel about them?

Elsewhere this morning, I was reminded of my favorite brief reference on semicolon usage.

Dark Archive Contributor

1 person marked this as a favorite.
John Kretzer wrote:
What are some of your favorite authors?

As with so many boys of my generation, Zelazny was the galvanizing figure for me. Tolkien, Howard, Bradbury, Stewart, Leiber, LeGuin, and McKillip were also instrumental in shifting my primary affections from SF to fantasy. They aren't exactly fantasies, but the historical novels of Mary Renault tickle the same spot for me.

For contemporary fantasy, there's no one I admire or enjoy more than George R.R. Martin. I finally caught up on Joe Abercrombie's trilogy and love his writing, although I wish he'd given us a more conclusive conclusion.

The single book I'd most recommend to lovers of near-fantasy is Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafon.

My "guilty pleasures" outside of fantasy include Arturo Pérez-Reverte, Alan Furst, and Michael Connolly. Not that I feel the least bit guilty.

I'm woefully behind on current fantasy, but I've recently begun Max Gladstone's series on audio. It's outstanding.

Contributor

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Howard Andrew Jones wrote:
I kill LOTS of the central characters. The constraint that bothers me is the availability of resurrection magic. When I game, I usually house rule resurrection magic out of the campaign. I think the ability of "extra lives" or a "do over" can destroy story tension pretty easily.

I get what you're saying, but I think that the rules surrounding resurrection can be (not always are, but can be) a pretty good story driver.

Like the clock on Raise Dead. What if your buddy dies and you've got 10 days to get the corpse back to the only caster you know of, and you're also on a save-the-world timer (or stranded in the lost realm o' dinosaurs and a T-Rex just ate your boat and stepped on your compass, and you have no idea how or if you can get home, let alone in time) and it's a choice between completing the mission or saving your buddy? What if the environment is brutal with scent-tracking predators and you're dragging around an increasingly ripe piece of monster bait that just happens to be the mortal remains of your one true love?

What if you just finished going through a horrible dungeon of doom and the only thing you got out of it was this one diamond and there are only two survivors and one of you really wants to use the diamond to raise your fallen comrade and the other guy doesn't? Or there are two deaders and only enough money for one?

What if the cleric turns out to be a real jerk with her own competing agenda and demands all kinds of unreasonable concessions for the spell? And every day that you spend negotiating makes more of your leverage slip away as the clock starts to run low?

What if you go through all that trouble and grief and then the dead guy doesn't even come back quite right?

Any time there's a potential limit on resources -- whether money or time or available clerics -- then there's potential conflict, and where there's potential conflict then there's story, and whenever I have a chance to make characters play tug-of-war over a corpse, well, I giggle like a crazy person. ;)

Contributor

4 people marked this as a favorite.

oh man you know what else would be hilarious is if you played cuckoo bird with a dead guy for Raise Dead!

Sculpt Corpse --> Character A looks like Character B --> Character B's buddies pay to rezz him --> loooooooolll

especially if Character B's buddies haaated Character A, or he was just some random collateral victim guy and now it's like "what? you're heroes, you did a good deed! you brought Joe the Random Baker back to life! well done guys! sorry your fighter's dead forever now though, that sucks, well, guess I better resume taking over the world."

okay I'm going to go finish my coffee now.

Contributor

Liane Merciel wrote:

I get what you're saying, but I think that the rules surrounding resurrection can be (not always are, but can be) a pretty good story driver.

Those are all great ideas. Yet I keep tripping over the feeling that resurrection as an option feels pretty "gamey." I don't think I ever encountered it in fantasy adventure fiction until role-playing games came out. It's also why, until recently, I've avoided having clerics along during the adventure. Fafhrd and the Gray Mouser and Conan and Corwin didn't have a magical friend who could wave hands and set things right. On the other hand, Corwin had superhuman healing and even regained his vision after having his eyes burned out, so I think it's probably just my personal stumbling block...

Contributor

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Steve Geddes wrote:

As a general question to any author interested in answering it:

How many of the other PF Tales books do you read?
How much of the campaign setting stuff? Just the ones covering the area your novel is set in? The whole kit and kaboodle? Something else?

I started out with the desire to keep up, but with two kids and lots of books to write, it fell by the way side. I haven't even read all of Dave's books yet, and at this point I consider him a pretty close friend. So… I've read a handful here and there, but there are plenty of interesting looking ones I haven't gotten to yet.

As to the campaign stuff, there's just too much to keep track of unless its directly related to an area I'm writing in. If it's in an area I'm writing about, I've probably read portions of it multiple times.

Contributor

Liane Merciel wrote:

oh man you know what else would be hilarious is if you played cuckoo bird with a dead guy for Raise Dead!

Sculpt Corpse --> Character A looks like Character B --> Character B's buddies pay to rezz him --> loooooooolll

especially if Character B's buddies haaated Character A, or he was just some random collateral victim guy and now it's like "what? you're heroes, you did a good deed! you brought Joe the Random Baker back to life! well done guys! sorry your fighter's dead forever now though, that sucks, well, guess I better resume taking over the world."

okay I'm going to go finish my coffee now.

That's a good story idea...

Contributor

Orthos wrote:
If you could write any one story in Pathfinder/Golarion of your choosing, no restraints, no inhibitions, no limitations except those of the setting itself, what would it be?

I pretty much got to do that in the upcoming book, Beyond the Pool of Stars. Down in Sargava there was a lot of room to invent more details about the culture and society, and I got to invent a new sort of adventuring profession as well. I had a blast writing it, and I hope it's as fun to read.

Contributor

Kajehase wrote:

I'll go first. Are amy of you writers of the novels and web fiction serials interested in answering any questions?

And, if yes to the previous question, how did you first come into contact with the Pathfinder setting?

I was one of the editors at Black Gate magazine and ended up handling role-playing reviews. I was consistently impressed with Pathfinder products, and became friendly with Erik and James because I respected their products and because we shared similar interests in regards to fantasy fiction (and in Erik's case, obscure pulp fiction) and also because they're simply great guys.

When James heard I'd landed a novel contract for a fantasy series, he dropped me a line to ask if I'd be interested in drafting a proposal for the upcoming Pathfinder fiction line. Other commitments have kept me from drafting as many Pathfinder books as I've intended in the last few years, but I would certainly like to write more.

Contributor

John Kretzer wrote:

How often do you guys get together (either online or at cons) and think about how your various characters would get along?

Dave and Liane and I had some fun around the end of the last year kicking around a story that involved three of our characters, but it got a little complicated.

I hang out a lot with fellow Pathfinder writers at GenCon but we usually talk more about story process and book writing than we do about combining characters. Maybe it's something we ought to consider more often.


Have any of you ever tried to actually play any of your Tales characters in a Pathfinder game with other people? Or at the very least, made a character sheet for that character?

Edit: Also I want to thank you guys for the work you do. The Tales novels, as well as the short fiction in the APs, and on the website, really help the setting come alive for me. I do a lot of roleplay, and its the little things you guys put in your books that I love the most. Example: the 'tines' being a way to insult people, the superstitions(valid ones!) over a baby born laughing in the Land of the Linnorm Kings. I love learning about these things, and incorporating them into my own pathfinder characters. :)

Dark Archive Contributor

Subparhiggins wrote:
Have any of you ever tried to actually play any of your Tales characters in a Pathfinder game with other people? Or at the very least, made a character sheet for that character?

Whenever I start a new novel, I use Hero Labs to make a character sheet (often incomplete) for the main cast and principal antagonists, and for every character who casts spells. Mainly I'm looking for class abilities, skills, feats, and spells that can lead to cool plot or action moments.

I've never played one of my characters in a game, nor run one as an NPC. That might change this summer, but more likely I'll name-check them rather than expose them to the murder hobos.


Anyone have plans for a web tale and/or novel (or already have one that I missed) that is all at once a Golarion story and a really biting satire on our own world?

Contributor

Dave Gross wrote:
Subparhiggins wrote:
Have any of you ever tried to actually play any of your Tales characters in a Pathfinder game with other people? Or at the very least, made a character sheet for that character?

I created all the central characters for Plague of Shadows although, now that I look through my notes, I think I made some changes that I didn't record on the page.

After that one I mostly just keep track of what kind of spells a spell caster could use at the level I'm intending. Scratch that -- usually I have a spell in mind, and then I see what level a character would have to be to throw that. Following on that, I figure out what other spells the magic using character would be able to wield.

I've never played any of them in a game (I'm almost always the GM in my groups anyway). I've never role-played a female character. Drelm might be fun to run. I'm a huge fan of one of the lizard folk characters in my upcoming book, and I think he'd be a blast to play.


Pathfinder Adventure Subscriber
Howard Andrew Jones wrote:
John Kretzer wrote:

How often do you guys get together (either online or at cons) and think about how your various characters would get along?

Dave and Liane and I had some fun around the end of the last year kicking around a story that involved three of our characters, but it got a little complicated.

I've usually not been pleased by the result of multi-author series like War of the Spider Queen in the Forgotten Realms for instance, but when I read this a thought struck me: How about a Rashomon-style story where we get the story from each author's character's point of view? Maybe something for the web fiction? *meaningful glance in Sutter's direction*

Dark Archive Contributor

I love a Rashomon-style story.

Contributor

Subparhiggins wrote:

Have any of you ever tried to actually play any of your Tales characters in a Pathfinder game with other people? Or at the very least, made a character sheet for that character?

Edit: Also I want to thank you guys for the work you do.

I haven't played any of my characters, but I have their general stats and abilities on file, just so I don't have Celest cast too many spells and such.

And you're welcome! I think most of us love Golarion and Pathfinder enough to really be enjoying our work. I know I do.

Contributor

Dave Gross wrote:

I love a Rashomon-style story.

That would be fun! Hmmmm... I'm thinking of a social interaction in Cheliax! Perhaps Vreva and the count could dance... ;-)


Dave Gross wrote:
Kajehase wrote:
And just to stay on topic, a question: Semi-colons, how do you feel about them?
Elsewhere this morning, I was reminded of my favorite brief reference on semicolon usage.

Ha...awesome thanks! I'll save this for reference.

All I know is I throw in commas and semicolons...(or want to...or just think about it)...then MSWord tells me I'm doing it wrong so I take them out. :(

FU MSWord! ;)


This is going to those who said that like semicolons. The symbol of the semicolon is the question mark in the greek language and as such i sometimes get confused when i read sentences that include semicolons (also it's somewhat hilarious when i translate in my head sentences as questions and i try to figure out what it meant, go back and read the sentence again in order to make sense and then i realize that it's a semicolon and not a question mark).

I am very glad to see that the authors here do their research on the setting when writing a piece of fiction, recently i had a very bad experience (with an anthology of another game) on that front but you guys lifted my spirits.

My question is this:
If you were to put your protagonists through an AP (either the entire AP or specific module(s) of the AP) or module, which one would you choose?


Do you use/read 3pp material for PFRPG?

Have any of you read Matt Banach's Lost in Dream?

Liberty's Edge RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32, 2011 Top 16

With all this talk of sharing/borrowing each others characters, would you be interested in a Thieves' World style anthology set in Absalom where you liberally used each others characters? It probably couldn't work with established protagonists from novels, but if they were characters who were only used in the anthologies, it wouldn't interfere with plots for novels.

I know I'd be super excited about something like that, more so than a Rashomon-style story.

Editor

Subparhiggins wrote:

Have any of you ever tried to actually play any of your Tales characters in a Pathfinder game with other people? Or at the very least, made a character sheet for that character?

Edit: Also I want to thank you guys for the work you do. The Tales novels, as well as the short fiction in the APs, and on the website, really help the setting come alive for me. I do a lot of roleplay, and its the little things you guys put in your books that I love the most. Example: the 'tines' being a way to insult people, the superstitions(valid ones!) over a baby born laughing in the Land of the Linnorm Kings. I love learning about these things, and incorporating them into my own pathfinder characters. :)

I haven't had a chance to play them yet, but I definitely make up character sheets for the main cast (rough ones, at least) so I can track things easier as I write.

However, I will admit that for some reason, in Pillars of Eternity, I felt compelled to create a female dwarven barbarian to lead the party. And her helmet has horns. Funny that.

Editor

JoelF847 wrote:

With all this talk of sharing/borrowing each others characters, would you be interested in a Thieves' World style anthology set in Absalom where you liberally used each others characters? It probably couldn't work with established protagonists from novels, but if they were characters who were only used in the anthologies, it wouldn't interfere with plots for novels.

I know I'd be super excited about something like that, more so than a Rashomon-style story.

I do love shared world projects! Might be tricky with the main characters, as you point out, but there's also some one-offs in the web fiction that could easily pop up here and there!

Dark Archive Contributor

I do play characters named Radovan and Jeggare on Warcraft, come to think of it.

Editor

leo1925 wrote:


My question is this:
If you were to put your protagonists through an AP (either the entire AP or specific module(s) of the AP) or module, which one would you choose?

Hmm...Kingmaker could be a fun one, especially if it had Akina in more of her mercenary mode, potentially with Ondorum at her side wanting to help the situation, rather than take advantage of it. Seems like they'd brew up a little unintentional chaos in that AP setting.

Editor

Dave Gross wrote:
I do play characters named Radovan and Jeggare on Warcraft, come to think of it.

Heh. I use character names from multiple stories I've written as game names, both in WoW and elsewhere. Seems like I've taken the time to think them up in the first place, might as well put them to good use!

Actually, I just remembered naming one of my WoW monks Ondorum at one point...


Pathfinder Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Dave Gross wrote:
John Kretzer wrote:
What are some of your favorite authors?

As with so many boys of my generation, Zelazny was the galvanizing figure for me. Tolkien, Howard, Bradbury, Stewart, Leiber, LeGuin, and McKillip were also instrumental in shifting my primary affections from SF to fantasy. They aren't exactly fantasies, but the historical novels of Mary Renault tickle the same spot for me.

For contemporary fantasy, there's no one I admire or enjoy more than George R.R. Martin. I finally caught up on Joe Abercrombie's trilogy and love his writing, although I wish he'd given us a more conclusive conclusion.

The single book I'd most recommend to lovers of near-fantasy is Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafon.

My "guilty pleasures" outside of fantasy include Arturo Pérez-Reverte, Alan Furst, and Michael Connolly. Not that I feel the least bit guilty.

I'm woefully behind on current fantasy, but I've recently begun Max Gladstone's series on audio. It's outstanding.

Red Country is the real capstone for the Abercrombie trilogy. And a spaghetti western fantasy story, if you can belive that.

Also, this is the best thread ever!

Contributor

Howard Andrew Jones wrote:
Yet I keep tripping over the feeling that resurrection as an option feels pretty "gamey." I don't think I ever encountered it in fantasy adventure fiction until role-playing games came out.

That's a fair point. I haven't let any of my characters come back from the dead either (although I think I might have just talked myself into it in this very thread, so who knows, maybe a corpse clock is in my future).

Actually, you know what my biggest "gamey" hangup is? Letting my spellcasters fly in battle. It's SUCH a standard tactic, and I do it constantly in games, but I never ever let them fly around in novels even when it doesn't make a ton of tactical sense for them to stay on the ground. And it is straight-up because I have a mental block in my head where it's just "NO THEY STAY ON THE GROUND, NO WIZARDS ZOOMING AROUND IN THE AIR, THAT IS FINAL."

I'm not going to change that, I'm just acknowledging it for the record. I know it's a blind spot. I don't care. ;)

I want to throw that question out for everybody else, though: what's YOUR biggest hangup for "gamey" things that you don't want to allow in your stories?

Contributor

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Subparhiggins wrote:
Have any of you ever tried to actually play any of your Tales characters in a Pathfinder game with other people? Or at the very least, made a character sheet for that character?

Yeah, I'm running two of them as NPCs in my campaign right now.

It actually makes me laugh a lot because they're the two highest-level characters I ever created and they are just straight-up sending the PCs to do their work for them. It's the opposite of the "why doesn't Elminster just save the world?" problem: the novel characters are actually paying the PCs to go be heroes on their behalf. With good reason!

I might try to sneak that into my next book as a meta commentary on that whole thing, just for the sake of my own entertainment.

Quote:
Anyone have plans for a web tale and/or novel (or already have one that I missed) that is all at once a Golarion story and a really biting satire on our own world?

Not me. Satire is HARD. I'm just now getting to the point where I occasionally feel like maybe I can manage a single story without dropping too many balls. Stacking (good) satire on top of that would be like juggling flaming chainsaws while drunk and blindfolded, and then deciding that's not hard enough so you need to do it on a tightrope over an alligator pit.

Which is to say: you need to be amazingly talented or amazingly foolhardy to even think about it, and I am neither of those things.

I mean, there's a reason Douglas Adams and Terry Pratchett are legends: because out of seven billion people on Earth, they're the two guys who could actually pull that off. Everybody else got eaten by alligators and that's why you never hear about them.

Quote:
With all this talk of sharing/borrowing each others characters, would you be interested in a Thieves' World style anthology set in Absalom where you liberally used each others characters?

I'd probably wimp out there. I have great difficulty writing anyone else's characters, even relatively minor ones. I LOVE name-dropping them and sneaking in Easter Egg references to their backstories whenever possible, but actually trying to go inside their heads and write their experiences and dialogue? Too hard! I'd totally chicken out.


2 people marked this as a favorite.

I'm having WAY too much fun reading everyone's responses. I wish I knew all of the other Tales writers in real life! I'm lucky to know Josh Vogt pretty well via social media--I think we'd have a blast collaborating on a project together.

Guess I need to make sure I get to PaizoCon!


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
JoelF847 wrote:

With all this talk of sharing/borrowing each others characters, would you be interested in a Thieves' World style anthology set in Absalom where you liberally used each others characters? It probably couldn't work with established protagonists from novels, but if they were characters who were only used in the anthologies, it wouldn't interfere with plots for novels.

I know I'd be super excited about something like that, more so than a Rashomon-style story.

This would be awesome. Thieves World was a personal favorite back in the day. Even if there was only one book of collected shared city stories a Thieves World style book for Golarion would be fantastic.

I would donate to this Kickstarter.

Editor

Wendy Wagner 859 wrote:


Guess I need to make sure I get to PaizoCon!

Can't wait to meet in person, Wendy! I also recommend GenCon and Worldcon (that's where I met Dave). Will you be at either this year?


Pathfinder Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Subparhiggins wrote:
Have any of you ever tried to actually play any of your Tales characters in a Pathfinder game with other people? Or at the very least, made a character sheet for that character?

Kind of a reverse to this question...

Have you ever turned a RPG character of yours into one of your characters in a novel?


Do any of you have a favorite class in the RPG you like to portray in your writing?

Or do you find yourselves making a lot of characters of one class more than others?

How much do you keep a characters class in mind while writing, if at all? Do you ever find this constraining?

Contributor

Subparhiggins wrote:

Do any of you have a favorite class in the RPG you like to portray in your writing?

Or do you find yourselves making a lot of characters of one class more than others?

How much do you keep a characters class in mind while writing, if at all? Do you ever find this constraining?

I mostly (read: 99% of the time) play wizards, or whatever closest equivalent arcane spellcaster is permitted under the game's rules if there isn't a wizard class. Unsurprisingly, I think every book I've ever written has featured a wizard in a main role.

I write a lot of paladins too. Have never played one, will never play one, can't stop writing them in books for some reason.

Class is generally at the forefront of my mind while I'm writing a character, especially if I'm not completely into that character's head yet and haven't figured out the finer details of that character's personality, in which case the class can sometimes start to substitute a little too much for individual personality. It's a trap that's been pointed out to me by readers of early drafts more than once, so it's one of the things that I try to be extra mindful of now.

But, at the same time, I feel like realistically that would be a HUGE part of who you are and how you think of yourself as a person in one of these worlds. Look how strongly people identify with their professions in the real world (and how quickly they'll correct you if, for example, you accidentally refer to a detective by the title "officer," or fail to give a doctor his or her honorific), and that's WITHOUT getting spiffy supernatural powers on top of their job title!

So that can be a tricky needle to thread sometimes. It's a fun challenge. But it occasionally is a challenge, at least for me. :)

Quote:
Have you ever turned a RPG character of yours into one of your characters in a novel?

Yes. Even more often I've used villains and monsters from my campaigns as characters (and have once or twice stolen interesting PC tactics to use in novel fights).

I've also put in Easter Eggs for a couple of my PCs' characters in novels, which nobody outside our campaign will ever get (but that's okay because it makes me laugh, which is of course the entire point), and have occasionally named minor characters after PCs. I don't use the characters wholesale because they're not my characters, but I do borrow their names from time to time.

Contributor

1 person marked this as a favorite.

Oh right, a tangential thought that I wanted to write down for some reason (intersection of high level and class discussions!):

So a thing that I have discovered (which is undoubtedly a very obvious thing, because that is the kind of thing I discover) is that if you want to write a high-level character but don't want to break your story, the best possible choice is to use a high-level fighter.

Other martial classes work too, but fighters are the best because they can't break the story! They can go up against impressive monsters and they can smash the hell out of scary combat threats, but plotwise they are not going to be tearing down the maze walls no matter how high-level they get.

Ever since I made this discovery I've been kind of wandering around humming "I love fighters!" under my breath, and that is not even that much of an exaggeration.

Dark Archive Contributor

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Subparhiggins wrote:
Do any of you have a favorite class in the RPG you like to portray in your writing?

Rogues and their cousins are a lot of fun, as are fighter types. Feats and combat maneuvers translate well into scenes of high action.

Quote:
Or do you find yourselves making a lot of characters of one class more than others?

When I first started writing tie-in fiction, I avoided spellcasters. Most of my heroes were warriors and rogues. The main villain was often a monster or a spellcaster, shoving the magic over onto the evil side of the conflict. I also tended to favor human characters, seldom including a demihuman, and then usually because another author in the series had written one, and I needed to include her in the narrative.

That began to change when I wrote one of the D&D (as opposed to Forgotten Realms, where I got my start) short novels under the house name T.H. Lain. In The Sundered Arms, I decided that all of my protagonists would be non-humans, and two would be casters. I meant it as a challenge to myself, but it turned out that writing casters--especially divine casters, who come with a hard-wired set of beliefs and prejudices--was much more fun than it was difficult. Since then, I've never looked back. Spellcasting semi-humans for the win!

Quote:
How much do you keep a characters class in mind while writing, if at all? Do you ever find this constraining?

When conceiving the character and outlining the story, I keep it in mind a lot. When I start writing, my thoughts shift heavily toward the character's personality and desires, but by then I've made the connections between who the character is and what the character can do. Thus, I rarely need to go back and add more game-mechanic events to the story. The character's ability and personality are already "baked in."

But I also like to keep a character's class a little foggy. Other characters in the setting won't say, for instance, "Oh, she's a mute oracle." Instead, some might call her a witch, others a priestess, and so on. For example, the character in this example is Azra from Prince of Wolves, whom I'd originally conceived as having a cleric/cleric multiclass. Soon afterward, Paizo invented the oracle, a class that fit her even better.

Other characters, like Varian Jeggare, I've always intended to transform during their journey. The twin justifications of retraining and a world of high magic are my defense, but I limit it to Varian. Radovan is a unique being for reasons gradually unfolding in his continuing story. Everybody else just "gains levels," a phrase that still sounds weird to me, since the moment I put words into their mouths or set them in motion, the characters don't feel like sets of rules to me. It's only during initial creation and revision that I think hard about class, skills, feats, and so on.

In a perfect world, I think exact game mechanics remain invisible in fiction, but perceptive gamers can work them out. That's why I try to keep them mostly accurate to the Pathfinder RPG. And if there's more than one good answer for the question, "What's that character's build?" that's a good thing. It lets gamer-readers take on a more active imaginative role with the stories, and some have more interesting game interpretations of my characters than I ever did.

If you aren't sick of authors answering questions about their work, check out my latest Creative Colleagues interview with Josh Vogt, author of Forge of Ashes. You can see dozens more such interviews right here.

Executive Editor

I think that the hardest game element to manage in the novel line—for me and probably most of the folks here—is the magic system. It's hard to have to think through every implication and make sure that, even if it's not in the story, you know why your protagonist doesn't just cast Spell X and solve any given problem.

Probably one of the most pervasive specific issues is that of magical healing and resurrection, as folks have mentioned—it's hard to keep tensions high when there's a perception that anyone can be brought back from the dead for the price of a nice magic item. (There are, of course, plenty of good ways that issue can be skirted, and logistical reasons why being rich in Golarion doesn't make you functionally unkillable, but at the end of the day we're still working within a framework designed to let *players* bring characters back to life while trying to keep everyone else from doing the same thing.)


Pathfinder Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

These questions are mostly for Dave Gross...

How do you write about classes that don't exist yet? Do you get knowledge beforehand? Your characters inspire class ideas? Or is it some strange form of mind control? ;)

Also could you right a character that is a wizard/Rogue hybrid type class because I would really want one in the game.

Dark Archive Contributor

John Kretzer wrote:

These questions are mostly for Dave Gross...

How do you write about classes that don't exist yet? Do you get knowledge beforehand? Your characters inspire class ideas? Or is it some strange form of mind control? ;)

Also could you right a character that is a wizard/Rogue hybrid type class because I would really want one in the game.

It's the mind control.

I haven't yet had foreknowledge of an upcoming class. It's been coincidence, parallel inspiration, luck, the Force, like that.

A wizard/rogue or, as we called them back in the Cretaceous, a magic-user/thief, is one of my favorite multiclass combos. I don't know why one hasn't appeared in my novels yet.

Oh, that's right. There are two in Lord of Runes. One of them might even be familiar to you.

RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32

Tease.


JRVogt wrote:

Can't wait to meet in person, Wendy! I also recommend GenCon and Worldcon (that's where I met Dave). Will you be at either this year?

I'll be at Worldcon for sure!


My story in Adventure Path #95 is about an alchemist--he was my first serious magic-user in fiction (although when we play, I play as a cleric). It was weird and fun to figure out everything the character could and couldn't do. To be honest, I really picked an alchemist because I wanted to include cool explosions!

I do love writing fighters. I like reading about weapons and thinking about how they'd be used in different situations. Research is probably my favorite part of writing for Pathfinder--I'm a total history nut.


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

How do you all approach the Christmas tree effect?

It seems to me that PFTales protagonists don't continually "upgrade" equipment, nor are they festooned with trinkets - rather they each have one or two significant items. This is very much to my tastes, however it doesn't really seem true to Pathfinder's spirit. Are the minor items all there in the background, just not emphasised perhaps?

Dark Archive Contributor

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Steve Geddes wrote:

How do you all approach the Christmas tree effect?

It seems to me that PFTales protagonists don't continually "upgrade" equipment, nor are they festooned with trinkets - rather they each have one or two significant items. This is very much to my tastes, however it doesn't really seem true to Pathfinder's spirit. Are the minor items all there in the background, just not emphasised perhaps?

Kitting out anybody with the full panoply of gear game characters usually have would be pretty overwhelming. If nothing else, you'd have to navigate "laundry list" descriptions if you geared every fiction character the way you do in the game. I've tried to keep it lean without just introducing items I know will be useful to the plot. Sometimes I imply magic items rather than spelling out their abilities, as with Oparal's arms and armor.

There are more magic items in play in the next novel, partly because there are more characters who fit the "adventurer" paradigm and partly because there're some powerful magical forces in play. Still, I'm sure most PT characters are woefully under-geared by PFS standards.

On the other hand, I feel that paucity of magical gear gives me plenty of wiggle room for unusual or powerful items like the Red Carriage or the Shadowless Sword or the unique crossbow one of the new characters wields. What Pathfinder Tales characters lack in quantity of magic items, they often make up in quality.

Contributor

1 person marked this as a favorite.

I'm 100% with Dave on that one.

If an item is significant for some aspect of character or plot development, then I'll make an effort to highlight that in the text. But otherwise, for the most part, I leave it implied rather than explicitly stated.

For example, in Nightblade, Isiem notices that Ascaros is outfitted with much better gear than he himself has. Not that much of it is spelled out in the text (unless it's important to a particular scene, I tend not to spend a lot of time on it), but a savvy reader can infer that, in game terms, Ascaros probably has a level-appropriate complement and Isiem definitely doesn't.

Similarly, in another book, a character reflects on how his lack of gear makes it unwise to pick a particular fight against forces that wouldn't be so overwhelming if only he had all his stuff (curses!). Again, the exact equipment doesn't get spelled out, which avoids the Christmas tree effect (and allows readers who prefer a slightly lower-magic world to imagine the scene in a way consistent with those preferences), but a sharp-eyed reader could make a reasonable guess that the character's got good enough equipment for that to be a meaningful difference.

But I agree, my own preference is to emphasize at most one or two really significant items per character and otherwise, eh, maybe the rest of that stuff is there and maybe it isn't. You decide!


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

Im certainly glad you both do it (the Christmas tree effect is one of my real hang ups with PF, specifically because it's so unlike what we read in fiction). In terms of being left as an exercise for the reader, I'm definitely reading them as extremely rare. If those who like them are "reading them in, between the lines" you've done a stellar job. :)

I just wondered how important it was to make a PF novel "close" to a PF adventure.
Cheers.

Contributor

Thanael wrote:

Do you use/read 3pp material for PFRPG?

Have any of you read Matt Banach's Lost in Dream?

Yes, and no, but I love the cover! On my ever growing list.

51 to 100 of 367 << first < prev | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | next > last >>
Community / Forums / Archive / Pathfinder / Pathfinder Tales / Ask the Pathfinder Tales Tellers all your questions here. All Messageboards

Want to post a reply? Sign in.