War for the Crown AP, Feb 2018


War for the Crown

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Ckorik wrote:
Hythlodeus wrote:


[edit] the original version of RotRL uses the exact same information on pgs. 9-11 of Skinsaw Murders. (just to avoid dscussions about changes made between editions)

** spoiler omitted **

Given the distance to Mediogalti - the info in part 1 can't be true - thus the disagreement we have here - if it said 'local contacts' or something I'd be on board - but as read it sets up having sent it off way before.

Which goes on to explain the them being involved in this entire mess long before Aldern got involved - I always figured they told Aldern that to get him out of the city and hope he got infected or eaten.

what this information says, as I understand it, is that the Red Mantis are 'assassins based in Mediogalti', not that the fungus was shipped to that island. It's basically information you give to the players after you told them "ther's an entry in the ledger that says the fungus was given to the Red Mantis." "To whom?" "They are a sinister group of assassins from Mediogalti, an island northwest of the Eye of Abendego near the western shore of Garu... no, you don't have to write that down, it doesn't matter.Let's just say, they're bad hombres."


Hythlodeus wrote:


what this information says, as I understand it, is that the Red Mantis are 'assassins based in Mediogalti', not that the fungus was shipped to that island. It's basically information you give to the players after you told them "ther's an entry in the ledger that says the fungus was given to the Red Mantis." "To whom?" "They are a sinister group of assassins from Mediogalti, an island northwest of the Eye of Abagendo near the western shore of Garu... no, you don't have to write that down, it doesn't matter.Let's just say, they're bad hombres."

Thus our disagreement - the writeup is what's in the journal - which, as I understand it, would mean the stuff went to the island and the payment returned from there.

The difference between these casual relationships and say Shattered Star which actually has elements from the other AP's that require them to have already happened is night and day.

You will also note that these first two (despite having hard covers and being extensively re-read by James Jacobs) were not in his list of 'must have happened'.

Scarab Sages

Rysky wrote:
CorvusMask wrote:

Can I at this point point out the fact that campaign settings books HAVE advanced the timeline before?

For example, RotR starts in year 4707(aka 2007 irl years), 5 years after 4702 when the thing happened, right? Well, Numeria's campaign setting books lists events for 4709 and 4711 and year 4714 as "Present year"(which was also Iron Gods'/campaign setting book's released year)

So yeaaaaah, they have been doing that all the time in campaign setting books for years by now. Its not just PFS that advances timeline.

*nods*

We don't have the Times of Troubles or Spellplague (thank the various gods and goddesses above and below) but the world of Golarion has been on a gradual advancement since the very beginning. Slow, but gradual.

Or the return of the gods and divine magic, followed in short order by the failure of both divine and arcane magic (and their replacement by two new types of magic), the theft of the world by an evil goddess, the death of said goddess and the demotion to mortality of the primary god of Good, and the return of primal Chaos to destroy the world. *cough* Dragonlance *cough* apocalypse du jour *cough*

Paizo Employee Creative Director

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captain yesterday wrote:
Then what about the Adventurers Guide. It seems like that book assumes EVERY adventure path it touches has happened.

And if that ends up being something folks HATE, we'll take that into account in the future.

My perception is that, to a certain extent, people DO assume that the APs and everything we publish advances the world's metaplot, though.

We'll certainly be observing how folks react to the Adventurer's Guide in this way, but so far, concerns about it assuming APs have taken place seem pretty minimal, with AP-related concerns being mostly about spoilers and not so much about assumptions.

Dark Archive

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James Jacobs wrote:
My perception is that, to a certain extent, people DO assume that the APs and everything we publish advances the world's metaplot, though.

I can attest that a lot of my players seem to assume that before I explain how it works <_< And I sure wouldn't mind more material like Xin-Shalast article on Lost Cities of Golarion that details what happens to AP locations after the campaign...

Paizo Employee Creative Director

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GeraintElberion wrote:

So far, Paizo have done a good job of allowing setting material to work before/after APs for those who run them, mostly by assuming pre-AP in the setting material. APs always run individually, especially with outcomes, so even if the AP has been played, a post-AP piece of setting may invalidate *my* game.

I.e. if Paizo invented rulers who had completed Kingmaker, what does that mean for my PCs who completed Kingmaker...

Paizo have done this pretty well so far, but it's easy to worry about hundreds and hundreds of dollars of books being invalidated. And about home campaigns being disrupted.

And we'll continue to try to do so.

The Worldwound book is a good example, I think. Even if you play Wrath of the Righteous, the bulk of the content in the 64 page Worldwound book is still applicable. I like to think over the past decade plus we've gotten pretty good at juggling AP story advancement and other products. It's a moving target, of course, and we'll continue to keep an eye on it, but if we do something that folks LOVE in an AP (say, create a group like the Gray Maidens, or have something like Thassilon's legacy become a big part of the setting rather than something no one in-world knows about), we'll run with it.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

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captain yesterday wrote:

That's kind of my point. If they're going to invalidate an AP that came out a little over a year ago when does it stop.

No thank you.

The inclusion of the Silver Ravens in Adventurer's Guide does nothing to invalidate the Hell's Rebels AP at all.


Ckorik wrote:

Thus our disagreement - the writeup is what's in the journal - which, as I understand it, would mean the stuff went to the island and the payment returned from there.

And even if that was the case (which I assume is not, since there are clearly Red Mantis agents in Varisia), the distance is maybe a couple of weeks by ship. Enough time to ship it, weaponize it and then bring the virus back to Korvosa. I just looked at the map of the Inner Sea again. The distance, if geography and distances parallels Earth's is approximatly the same as the distance between UK and the Canary Islands. That's not that long a travel. 16th century ships needed 65 days from Europe to the colonies in North America. Vasco daGama sailed from Lisbon to the Canaries from 8 July 1497 to 15 July. That's a week.

Scarab Sages

Sounds like a potentially excellent AP to me! I hope it does use the rules systems from Ultimate Intrigue. I don't think it would be too hard to paraphrase some of those systems in sidebars to accommodate people who haven't bought Ultimate Intrigue.

Scarab Sages

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Hythlodeus wrote:
Ckorik wrote:

Thus our disagreement - the writeup is what's in the journal - which, as I understand it, would mean the stuff went to the island and the payment returned from there.

And even if that was the case (which I assume is not, since there are clearly Red Mantis agents in Varisia), the distance is maybe a couple of weeks by ship. Enough time to ship it, weaponize it and then bring the virus back to Korvosa. I just looked at the map of the Inner Sea again. The distance, if geography and distances parallels Earth's is approximatly the same as the distance between UK and the Canary Islands. That's not that long a travel. 16th century ships needed 65 days from Europe to the colonies in North America. Vasco daGama sailed from Lisbon to the Canaries from 8 July 1497 to 15 July. That's a week.

Not to mention the fact that the Red Mantis certainly have enough money and high level spell casters to teleport important people and items as needed.


Hythlodeus wrote:
Ckorik wrote:

Thus our disagreement - the writeup is what's in the journal - which, as I understand it, would mean the stuff went to the island and the payment returned from there.

And even if that was the case (which I assume is not, since there are clearly Red Mantis agents in Varisia), the distance is maybe a couple of weeks by ship. Enough time to ship it, weaponize it and then bring the virus back to Korvosa. I just looked at the map of the Inner Sea again. The distance, if geography and distances parallels Earth's is approximatly the same as the distance between UK and the Canary Islands. That's not that long a travel. 16th century ships needed 65 days from Europe to the colonies in North America. Vasco daGama sailed from Lisbon to the Canaries from 8 July 1497 to 15 July. That's a week.

It only took a few weeks to engineer the plague according to CotCT - again nothing here that says anything conclusive - especially if they used magic at all.

Liberty's Edge

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I can not wait run this with Heroes of the Streets and Heroes of the High Court supplements . Will this involve the Loin Blades from Taldor?


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Ckorik wrote:
Hythlodeus wrote:
Ckorik wrote:

Thus our disagreement - the writeup is what's in the journal - which, as I understand it, would mean the stuff went to the island and the payment returned from there.

And even if that was the case (which I assume is not, since there are clearly Red Mantis agents in Varisia), the distance is maybe a couple of weeks by ship. Enough time to ship it, weaponize it and then bring the virus back to Korvosa. I just looked at the map of the Inner Sea again. The distance, if geography and distances parallels Earth's is approximatly the same as the distance between UK and the Canary Islands. That's not that long a travel. 16th century ships needed 65 days from Europe to the colonies in North America. Vasco daGama sailed from Lisbon to the Canaries from 8 July 1497 to 15 July. That's a week.
It only took a few weeks to engineer the plague according to CotCT - again nothing here that says anything conclusive - especially if they used magic at all.

well if it only took a few weeks, then the timeline fits perfecty. why are we arguing?


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As it stands there is a lot of work to do. A succession crisis isn't really supported by the current material. Stavian not only has no cannon heir, he doesn't even have a full name. AFAIK only one prefecture has a name and the maps of Taldor in different books disagree about how many prefectures there are.

Imagine running a US civil war game without knowing the President's name, the names of any states, or a unified view on how many states there were.

I'm interested to see how the world building gets broken up between the AP volumes and the new Taldor book that is due out at the end of the year. I'm interested in the answers to questions about how Taldor works as a government and a nation, but I'd rather have those answers collected in a single Taldor volume rather than scattered over seven volumes.


Hythlodeus wrote:
Ckorik wrote:
Hythlodeus wrote:
Ckorik wrote:

Thus our disagreement - the writeup is what's in the journal - which, as I understand it, would mean the stuff went to the island and the payment returned from there.

And even if that was the case (which I assume is not, since there are clearly Red Mantis agents in Varisia), the distance is maybe a couple of weeks by ship. Enough time to ship it, weaponize it and then bring the virus back to Korvosa. I just looked at the map of the Inner Sea again. The distance, if geography and distances parallels Earth's is approximatly the same as the distance between UK and the Canary Islands. That's not that long a travel. 16th century ships needed 65 days from Europe to the colonies in North America. Vasco daGama sailed from Lisbon to the Canaries from 8 July 1497 to 15 July. That's a week.
It only took a few weeks to engineer the plague according to CotCT - again nothing here that says anything conclusive - especially if they used magic at all.
well if it only took a few weeks, then the timeline fits perfecty. why are we arguing?

LOL because the point was made that CotCT *requires* the events in RotRL to happen in order to play the AP - which I disagree with entirely - nothing in Curse requires the players to know about RotRL and running the two out of order doesn't break the timeline or world in any way (even if you make no changes to both AP's).

The only way that they would interact at all is if the players go totally off the rails in either AP - Curse to find the source of the plague - and RotRL to find the 'mysterious cult' - in both cases the story would no longer be 'the AP' really.

I'm not sure we are arguing though honestly - I thought it was a discussion, I mean the events in either book can be any way you want them to be ultimately it doesn't bother me :P


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Ring_of_Gyges wrote:
As it stands there is a lot of work to do. A succession crisis isn't really supported by the current material. Stavian not only has no cannon heir, he doesn't even have a full name. AFAIK only one prefecture has a name and the maps of Taldor in different books disagree about how many prefectures there are.

I found this quote at pathfinder.wikia.com:

"Taldor is ruled by the grand prince, a hereditary title. The current Grand Prince Stavian III has only one heir, his daughter, Princess Eutropia."

Does the existing official material not support that? The main thing we would be missing for a succession crisis is who else is claiming the throne and why anyone would support that person's claim over that of Eutropia, whose claim to the succession should otherwise be undisputed.


Eutropia is Stavian's daughter but isn't the heir because she's legally barred from taking the throne. The heir is the person the law says should be Emperor next.

If Eutropia can't inherit because of her gender there has to be someone else who is Stavian's male next of kin. An uncle, brother, cousin, someone like that. No matter how far removed, he has *some* male relative who should stand to inherit. That's a person Eutropia would have to content with if she wants to claim the throne and who doesn't exist in cannon.

I'm nervous about how possible it is to do political intrigue in an AP. If the story is predetermined, Eutropia's rival claimant kind of has to be a two dimensional villain. Almost by definition he can't have a legitimate claim, because if he does the PCs might pick him instead and the structure of APs can't really handle that level of flexibility. Rise of the Runelords can assume the PCs won't join up with Karzoug, but a "political" game where there can't really be legitimate political disagreements seems hard.


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Ckorik wrote:
Hythlodeus wrote:
Ckorik wrote:
Hythlodeus wrote:
Ckorik wrote:

Thus our disagreement - the writeup is what's in the journal - which, as I understand it, would mean the stuff went to the island and the payment returned from there.

And even if that was the case (which I assume is not, since there are clearly Red Mantis agents in Varisia), the distance is maybe a couple of weeks by ship. Enough time to ship it, weaponize it and then bring the virus back to Korvosa. I just looked at the map of the Inner Sea again. The distance, if geography and distances parallels Earth's is approximatly the same as the distance between UK and the Canary Islands. That's not that long a travel. 16th century ships needed 65 days from Europe to the colonies in North America. Vasco daGama sailed from Lisbon to the Canaries from 8 July 1497 to 15 July. That's a week.
It only took a few weeks to engineer the plague according to CotCT - again nothing here that says anything conclusive - especially if they used magic at all.
well if it only took a few weeks, then the timeline fits perfecty. why are we arguing?

LOL because the point was made that CotCT *requires* the events in RotRL to happen in order to play the AP - which I disagree with entirely - nothing in Curse requires the players to know about RotRL and running the two out of order doesn't break the timeline or world in any way (even if you make no changes to both AP's).

The only way that they would interact at all is if the players go totally off the rails in either AP - Curse to find the source of the plague - and RotRL to find the 'mysterious cult' - in both cases the story would no longer be 'the AP' really.

I'm not sure we are arguing though honestly - I thought it was a discussion, I mean the events in either book can be any way you want them to be ultimately it doesn't bother me :P

wait, when was that point made? because that didn't came from me and I don't think it came from Rysky either. In fact, my first statement on the whole 'advancing timeline' discussion was that the links between te APs are easy to ignore and that you can run them in any order you like.

Hythlodeus wrote:

Idk, I guess for me the myth of the static timeline was debunked by the time the second AP set in Golarion came out. CotCT clearly referenced RotRL and events that happend in it. Especially ** spoiler omitted ** indicated that Runelords had to happen before Curse. Of course, that didn't mean one had to play RotRL to understand CotCT and the links between those two AP's were small enough and could be ignored, but nevertheless there was an understanding of interconnectivity and passage of time even at the very start of Pathfinder.

And every time a nation or area that already featured in an AP before got revisited, those links were there. Subtle, in most cases, but they existed.
And personally, I like that approach. Because as a GM you can decide to either put the spotlight on those links or ignore them and have the APs stand on their own.
And in the rare cases, when ignoring something came before didn't work, like in Shattered Star, which was developed as a sequel, the AP still worked without knowledge of the APs that preceded it. Those rare cases are rare enough, though.

[...] as long as you don't play it with your group and as long as you and your group don't DECIDE that all the APs you play take place in the same continuity, it is like all those probably setting changing events before (WotR comes to mind) not a change you are forced to implement in your personal version of Golarion and almost certainly totally ignorable if you chose to ignore it. [...]

The only statement to Rysky that I could find that comes close to the point is this:

Rysky wrote:
]The second AP ever was running on the assumption that the first happened, or at least parts of it.

And that still holds. It runs on the assumption that events that happened during RotRL

Spoiler:
(Aldern harvesting the virus)
happened, but that is an assumption easily ignored if the GM choses to do so. There are a million of possible sources for the plague a GM could come up with and the source stated in the AP itself, that links CotCT and RotRL is one of them IF the GM wants them to be linked or if the group only ever runs one of them an easily ignorable one.

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Kjeldorn wrote:
Steve Geddes wrote:
My way of thinking is that a book including reprints doesn't invalidate old books, it's just less value per page than a book with entirely new material (unless, like me, you put value on the compilation aspect).

Exactly, so a book should be valued less because of the reprint material. So a hardback with 1/3 parts reprint material should cost less the a hardback with no reprint material.

Boy, I'm looking forward to them shaving 7.5-10 bucks off the price of a new hardback.

Or they instituted an turn-in program, where you could send your "old" splat-books in, for a discount on a new product with re-print material. Even though I live on the other side of the pond, so that wouldn't really be that feasible to me.

Heck I would probably pay full price, if they gave that 10 bucks to an American charity.

But right now as I'm sitting here, I can't really help to find it slightly galling, that I might be paying "full price" for, what could amount to an errata to serveral classes or background material.

I don't think it should cost less. It depends on whether you value the compilation aspect (and the errata aspect, I guess - i hadn't thought of that, but I like that too).

If you only buy a book for the new material, you have to decide whether the amount of new material is worth it to you, of course. For me it is, but there isn't any "should" when it comes to value - that's inherently subjective.

I'd be happy to pay full price for a hardcover compilation of the player companions, for example - even if there was no new material.


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Ring_of_Gyges wrote:

Eutropia is Stavian's daughter but isn't the heir because she's legally barred from taking the throne. The heir is the person the law says should be Emperor next.

If Eutropia can't inherit because of her gender there has to be someone else who is Stavian's male next of kin. An uncle, brother, cousin, someone like that. No matter how far removed, he has *some* male relative who should stand to inherit. That's a person Eutropia would have to content with if she wants to claim the throne and who doesn't exist in cannon.

I'm nervous about how possible it is to do political intrigue in an AP. If the story is predetermined, Eutropia's rival claimant kind of has to be a two dimensional villain. Almost by definition he can't have a legitimate claim, because if he does the PCs might pick him instead and the structure of APs can't really handle that level of flexibility. Rise of the Runelords can assume the PCs won't join up with Karzoug, but a "political" game where there can't really be legitimate political disagreements seems hard.

I think you might be most of the way to defining the conflict there, along with the basis of each contender's claim:

Princess Eutropia: She is the heir because her father Grand Prince Stavian said that she was.

Next male relative in succession: Even Grand Prince Stavian lacks the authority to change the laws of succession to allow a female to inherit the throne, so Grand Prince Stavian's nearest male relative in the imperial line is the heir.

Each position is legitimate enough for Taldans to be split on the issue.

As to how the PCs are driven to side with the Princess: The adventure path could start while Stavian is still alive, and their success in the initial adventure results in the player characters being rewarded with positions in his service. As part of their initiation, they are required to pledge their fealty to the Grand Prince and to his daughter (and heir).

Then Prince Stavian dies, and the part of their pledge that they probably took less seriously now binds them to support the Princess.


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Ring_of_Gyges wrote:

Eutropia is Stavian's daughter but isn't the heir because she's legally barred from taking the throne. The heir is the person the law says should be Emperor next.

If Eutropia can't inherit because of her gender there has to be someone else who is Stavian's male next of kin. An uncle, brother, cousin, someone like that. No matter how far removed, he has *some* male relative who should stand to inherit. That's a person Eutropia would have to content with if she wants to claim the throne and who doesn't exist in cannon.

I'm nervous about how possible it is to do political intrigue in an AP. If the story is predetermined, Eutropia's rival claimant kind of has to be a two dimensional villain. Almost by definition he can't have a legitimate claim, because if he does the PCs might pick him instead and the structure of APs can't really handle that level of flexibility. Rise of the Runelords can assume the PCs won't join up with Karzoug, but a "political" game where there can't really be legitimate political disagreements seems hard.

Even if there is a pre-determined "canon" outcome and let's be honest, there has to be, that should not restrict how each individual troupe plays the AP.

I have run a table top Forgotten Realms game for 15 years, I don't let canon restrict what my PCs will do and won't do. Canon is what happens when they don't interfere with anything.


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James Jacobs wrote:
GeraintElberion wrote:

So far, Paizo have done a good job of allowing setting material to work before/after APs for those who run them, mostly by assuming pre-AP in the setting material. APs always run individually, especially with outcomes, so even if the AP has been played, a post-AP piece of setting may invalidate *my* game.

I.e. if Paizo invented rulers who had completed Kingmaker, what does that mean for my PCs who completed Kingmaker...

Paizo have done this pretty well so far, but it's easy to worry about hundreds and hundreds of dollars of books being invalidated. And about home campaigns being disrupted.

And we'll continue to try to do so.

The Worldwound book is a good example, I think. Even if you play Wrath of the Righteous, the bulk of the content in the 64 page Worldwound book is still applicable. I like to think over the past decade plus we've gotten pretty good at juggling AP story advancement and other products. It's a moving target, of course, and we'll continue to keep an eye on it, but if we do something that folks LOVE in an AP (say, create a group like the Gray Maidens, or have something like Thassilon's legacy become a big part of the setting rather than something no one in-world knows about), we'll run with it.

I think you're spot on with the amount of evolution.

I eventually lost interest in the Forgotten Realms because it had moved on so far from the books I started with I was beginning to not know the answers to pretty simple questions about it (like which Gods are still alive? and stuff).

Golarion has definitely changed (the knowledge of Thassilonian magic and the existence of Gray Maidens are both great examples) but my Korvosa book remains a favorite.

Some may consider the included lore or the whole book invalidated, I consider it's been added to.


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Steve Geddes wrote:
Kjeldorn wrote:
Steve Geddes wrote:
My way of thinking is that a book including reprints doesn't invalidate old books, it's just less value per page than a book with entirely new material (unless, like me, you put value on the compilation aspect).

Exactly, so a book should be valued less because of the reprint material. So a hardback with 1/3 parts reprint material should cost less the a hardback with no reprint material.

Boy, I'm looking forward to them shaving 7.5-10 bucks off the price of a new hardback.

Or they instituted an turn-in program, where you could send your "old" splat-books in, for a discount on a new product with re-print material. Even though I live on the other side of the pond, so that wouldn't really be that feasible to me.

Heck I would probably pay full price, if they gave that 10 bucks to an American charity.

But right now as I'm sitting here, I can't really help to find it slightly galling, that I might be paying "full price" for, what could amount to an errata to serveral classes or background material.

I don't think it should cost less. It depends on whether you value the compilation aspect (and the errata aspect, I guess - i hadn't thought of that, but I like that too).

If you only buy a book for the new material, you have to decide whether the amount of new material is worth it to you, of course. For me it is, but there isn't any "should" when it comes to value - that's inherently subjective.

I'd be happy to pay full price for a hardcover compilation of the player companions, for example - even if there was no new material.

I actually get all of that, and surprisingly I kind of agree with some of it.

Some of the splat-book could use getting collected together, given a look over and released again as a hardback (maybe a collected peoples of or the like)...but that will not ease the somewhat bitter taste, that it will leave some people with, when they discover that they might have to effectively "spent their money twice".
Really collecting the splat-book into hardback would be a good idea - since it would presumably mean the end of the "no errata for softcovers", but again my cynical side isn't really seeing them making fewer softcovers in favor of hardbacks (again this is probably down to how much money is made on which books).


Hythlodeus wrote:

The only statement to Rysky that I could find that comes close to the point is this:

Rysky wrote:

The second AP ever was running on the assumption that the first happened, or at least parts of it.

And that still holds. It runs on the assumption that events that happened during RotRL

Negative. JJ listed the AP's that link up on a 'assume previous AP occurred' Rise and Curse are not in that list for good reason. Every AP he listed has a blurb in the front that talks about what assumptions are required.

We have to disagree here.


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Kjeldorn wrote:
Steve Geddes wrote:
Kjeldorn wrote:
Steve Geddes wrote:
My way of thinking is that a book including reprints doesn't invalidate old books, it's just less value per page than a book with entirely new material (unless, like me, you put value on the compilation aspect).

Exactly, so a book should be valued less because of the reprint material. So a hardback with 1/3 parts reprint material should cost less the a hardback with no reprint material.

Boy, I'm looking forward to them shaving 7.5-10 bucks off the price of a new hardback.

Or they instituted an turn-in program, where you could send your "old" splat-books in, for a discount on a new product with re-print material. Even though I live on the other side of the pond, so that wouldn't really be that feasible to me.

Heck I would probably pay full price, if they gave that 10 bucks to an American charity.

But right now as I'm sitting here, I can't really help to find it slightly galling, that I might be paying "full price" for, what could amount to an errata to serveral classes or background material.

I don't think it should cost less. It depends on whether you value the compilation aspect (and the errata aspect, I guess - i hadn't thought of that, but I like that too).

If you only buy a book for the new material, you have to decide whether the amount of new material is worth it to you, of course. For me it is, but there isn't any "should" when it comes to value - that's inherently subjective.

I'd be happy to pay full price for a hardcover compilation of the player companions, for example - even if there was no new material.

I actually get all of that, and surprisingly I kind of agree with some of it.

Some of the splat-book could use getting collected together, given a look over and released again as a hardback (maybe a collected peoples of or the like)...but that will not ease the somewhat bitter taste, that it will leave some people with, when they discover that they might have to effectively "spent their money twice".

I think my main point is that nobody "has" to effectively spend their money twice. As long as it's clear what people are buying, I don't think there's an issue.

Some customers will consider it too pricey, others will consider it too cheap. Some will approve of the choices made and others would have preferred a different book had been produced. Provided there are accurate product descriptions, blogs, previews and so forth then it's easy (for us).

Paizo have the difficult task of trying to walk the middle road between the thousands of conflicting tastes we all have and to emerge with a book which sells enough for the employees to keep eating and for the company to be able to make another one.


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what? wait, do I get that right? you literally agreed that there is a narrative link between RotRL and CotCT but questioned the timeline as presented. We agreed (after a short back and forth) somewhat on the timeline, we agreed the link is not relevant to the order (if any) in which they are played.

So.. the link, we both agree with can be easily ignored by GMs and therefore needs no further blurb about requirements in the AP itself, this very link, according to your last post, suddenly does not exist at all, because there is no (in this case) unnecessary blurb in CotCT about required assumptions?

Okay, now I need a beer or two

Project Manager

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CorvusMask wrote:
Now while I do agree that if you post something in public message board, other posters have right to comment on our post whether they agree or disagree, but I have to say I don't think he has to "prove" you guys by linking you guys old posts he is talking about :P This ain't exactly a court or something

If he's going to single out an individual staffer and call them a liar, in public, then yes, he should be able to back up his claims.


Hythlodeus wrote:

what? wait, do I get that right? you literally agreed that there is a narrative link between RotRL and CotCT but questioned the timeline as presented. We agreed (after a short back and forth) somewhat on the timeline, we agreed the link is not relevant to the order (if any) in which they are played.

So.. the link, we both agree with can be easily ignored by GMs and therefore needs no further blurb about requirements in the AP itself, this very link, according to your last post, suddenly does not exist at all, because there is no (in this case) unnecessary blurb in CotCT about required assumptions?

Okay, now I need a beer or two

AP assumes previous path has been run so far has always meant there is some part of the AP the players will interact with that relies on the previous AP to run in order to work. The 'thing' (be it NPC or setting or whatever) doesn't fit otherwise and may even give spoilers to the previous AP.

Shattered Star for example has Grey Maidens - which did not exist prior to CotCT - if you run Shattered Star first - and the players make note of the NPC - then you have to change CotCT to account for the fact that the organization already exists in your world.

RotRL and CotCT have some text the GM can use *if they want* to link the two together - but if the players play both AP's *as written* - even if there are decades of 'in your world game time' between them - they don't conflict with each other. It would require the GM giving more information to the players than they can glean from the available sources in game - to make a connection between them.

That's the difference.

You can't claim the AP assumes the other has happened when they can ignore each other and work without any changes to the AP. I (actually) love tie ins like this because if the players want to go off rails I can provide an *entire adventure* around that kind of content that may not be the AP as written but gives me enough plot to use if that's where the game goes - that's entirely different than say playing Wrath of Thrune and then trying to play council of thieves - as written that would be impossible to pull off if you have a consistent world.


David knott 242 wrote:
As part of their initiation, they are required to pledge their fealty to the Grand Prince and to his daughter (and heir).

What if a player asks (out of character) "Hey, can the emperor just change the law like that?" when asked to pledge fealty to the daughter?

Option 1: "Yes, his legal authority is clear."
Option 2: "No, he is clearly out of line."
Option 3: "The law isn't clear, reasonable scholars disagree."

I feel like option 3 is the most interesting for political intrigue but if the AP is going to require the party to join Eutropia's faction it has to use option 1. Using option three means there can be fun debates about the nature of authority, legitimate government, sexism, democracy, all that fun stuff.

I don't see how an AP could use 3 though because it needs a railroad and if reasonable people can disagree some PCs will disagree and be unwilling to pick up their train ticket. Some lawful PC should say to Stavian "But if you disinherit the current legal heir aren't you going to prompt an awful Game of Thrones style civil war where tens of thousands of innocents die?" and refuse to sign on.

Its not that it can't be done. You can play a cold war game with lots of intrigue where the heroes have to be capitalists, but I'd just much rather a setting book that detailed the issues and factions and let the PCs hash it out themselves to an AP where there is only one acceptable answer because we have to maneuver them down a predictable and writable path.


CotCT - as written - runs on the assumption that a

Spoiler:
plague takes place during
CotCT - as written - that only exists - as written - in CotCT - because during the events of Skinsaw Murders - as written - the second book of RotRL stuff happened.

A clear, linear passage of time. 'Event A' leads to 'Event B'.

The result of a linear passage of time? A timeline. A timeline that advances. In this case it advances from 'Event A' to 'Event B'

The GM is free to highlight that link or ignore it or change events does whatever he wants to do. AS WRITTEN, it is there.

That doesn't mean CotCT requires knowledge of RotRL, that doesn't necessarily mean CotCT spoils RotRL if played out of order.

But that still means, that - as written - there is still the assumption that 'Event B' followed 'Event A' and that time betweeen those events advanced from the first to the second event.

An advancing timeline, therefore, not a static one.

Everything else, any 'requirements', is nothing I brought into this conversation or implied, because that was never the point of the whole discussion. It was never about any requirements. It was always about the existence of time that advances between the APs.


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Ring_of_Gyges wrote:


David knott 242 wrote:


As part of their initiation, they are required to pledge their fealty to the Grand Prince and to his daughter (and heir).

What if a player asks (out of character) "Hey, can the emperor just change the law like that?" when asked to pledge fealty to the daughter?

[...]

...Option 3: "The law isn't clear, reasonable scholars disagree."

I feel like option 3 is the most interesting for political intrigue but if the AP is going to require the party to join Eutropia's faction it has to use option 1. Using option three means there can be fun debates about the nature of authority, legitimate government, sexism, democracy, all that fun stuff.

I don't see how an AP could use 3 though because it needs a railroad and if reasonable people can disagree some PCs will disagree and be unwilling to pick up their train ticket. Some lawful PC should say to Stavian "But if you disinherit the current legal heir aren't you going to prompt an awful Game of Thrones style civil war where tens of thousands of innocents die?" and refuse to sign on.

Its not that it can't be done. You can play a cold war game with lots of intrigue where the heroes have to be capitalists, but I'd just much rather a setting book that detailed the issues and factions and let the PCs hash it out themselves to an AP where there is only one acceptable answer because we have to maneuver them down a predictable and writable path.

TRPGs are a group activity. (This is what I strongly believe. Others may have a different opinion. That's ok, but not really the point of my post that follows…)

Part of playing an AP is buying into the premise of said AP.

While the GM should attempt to make any reasonable changes to an AP to tailor it to their group, the players also should be willing to buy into the themes/plot/scenario of the story presented by the AP and make characters that mesh with it (and the rest of the group!).

Otherwise, why play that particular AP? If not everyone will get the maximum enjoyment from it, wouldn't it be better to play a different one for which all the players (including the GM) are on board? That way, everyone can have fun, right?

Of course, this doesn't invalidate any concerns of those who are keen for this AP. But let's not go finding 'phantom problems' with an AP that is still about 8 months away and for which we really don't have much detail, yet.

Oh!:
Yeah, yeah. The Internet & all that. <shrug>

Carry on, I guess.

--C.

EDIT: Fixed quote.


Quote:
A clear, linear passage of time. 'Event A' leads to 'Event B'.

We disagree on that - because it 'could work' doesn't mean it has to - and I've pointed out several times I disagree with the timeline you assert. Thank you for ignoring me though - I do appreciate being told what I think.

Quote:
The GM is free to highlight that link or ignore it or change events does whatever he wants to do. AS WRITTEN, it is there.

No - as WRITTEN the players have no way - or method of getting the information that ties them together. The GM can - by fiat - add more information so they can make the connection - the AP's as WRITTEN don't give the players that information.

Quote:
That doesn't mean CotCT requires knowledge of RotRL, that doesn't necessarily mean CotCT spoils RotRL if played out of order

We agree here - and this alone means one of the AP's can't 'assume' the other as run - otherwise this statement wouldn't be true.

Quote:
But that still means, that - as written - there is still the assumption that 'Event B' followed 'Event A' and that time betweeen those events advanced from the first to the second event.

Disagree here - I can even make a case that they happen at the same time and could be swapped if the players follow the plague lead from either one to the other - but that's the GM making the AP their own - not a official 'this has to happen then that'.


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okay, I give up.

you're absolutely free to have the opinion that it is a totally logical assumption that the Red Manatis FIRST used a weaponized plague and THEN, after that, harvested the source and weaponized it.

I mean, why not. that's how time works. cause and effect? interchangeable. linearity? whatever, man, just a concept. time is wibbly-wobbly as the Doctor once famously said.

you win, if there ever was anything to win - it sure wasn't my sanity, because I probably lost that a couple of sentences ago.


Hythlodeus wrote:

okay, I give up.

you're absolutely free to have the opinion that it is a totally logical assumption that the Red Manatis FIRST used a weaponized plague and THEN, after that, harvested the source and weaponized it.

I mean, why not. that's how time works. cause and effect? interchangeable. linearity? whatever, man, just a concept. time is wibbly-wobbly as the Doctor once famously said.

you win, if there ever was anything to win - it sure wasn't my sanity, because I probably lost that a couple of sentences ago.

No no - obviously the fact that there is GM only information in Curse that allows you to build a richer world FORCES the timeline.

Even though they can be run out of order

With 100 years between the two events in your world

Without changing anything as written.

/boggle.

Liberty's Edge

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Pathfinder Companion Subscriber

Interestingly enough I just got accepted to a Hell's Rebels game today and am very excited to play in it!

...so much for it being "invalidated", lol.

The Exchange

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Ckorik wrote:
No no - obviously the fact that there is GM only information in Curse that allows you to build a richer world FORCES the timeline.

Now you're just being stubborn. Hythlodeus didn't say anything about the timeline being forced. He actually admitted that it can easily be ignored in actual play, without changing the APs.

Still, and that's where he's right, as written, the timeline exists. And those sentences are not any less important just because it is "GM only" information. It is objective Lore, it is canon, which makes it an official timeline.

The thing is that your base assumption is wrong. it doesn't matter if you need to have run RotRL before CotCT for the timeline to exist. I mean there is no connection between RotRL and Reign of Winter. Still we know just by the official timeline that RotRL starts years before RoW starts. The existence of the timeline doesn't depend on the necessity to run things in a certain sequence. That it can be ignored so easily just shows how clever the Paizo approach to that topic has been so far.


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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber
Gorbacz wrote:
captain yesterday wrote:

Another time when I was directly lied to.

James Jacobs said they had no plans of releasing Curse Of The Crimson Throne. So I bought the last two books. Not even two weeks later as I'm literally opening up my package they announce the reprint.

He knew they were doing it, he just sent it off to the printer for Pete's sake. He didn't have to say anything at all, yet here he was telling people "nope, no plans"

So, whatever, defend them if you want, just get off my back.

I'm sorry, but I just took a look at your post history and I can't seem to find you asking James about the revised AP. Heck, I've found several posts where you are apparently super happy about the hardcover, joyful that it's being shipped and generally all is well and no vitriolic salt is being spit around.

So if you can direct me to the point where the supposed lie happened, I'd be obliged. Granted, I'm not sure if the search engine goes through aliases, which is kind of a factor in this case.

I stand corrected, my apologies. I couldn't find anything either.

I Even searched a couple other people, so sorry about that.


WormysQueue wrote:
Ckorik wrote:
No no - obviously the fact that there is GM only information in Curse that allows you to build a richer world FORCES the timeline.

Now you're just being stubborn. Hythlodeus didn't say anything about the timeline being forced. He actually admitted that it can easily be ignored in actual play, without changing the APs.

Still, and that's where he's right, as written, the timeline exists. And those sentences are not any less important just because it is "GM only" information. It is objective Lore, it is canon, which makes it an official timeline.

The thing is that your base assumption is wrong. it doesn't matter if you need to have run RotRL before CotCT for the timeline to exist. I mean there is no connection between RotRL and Reign of Winter. Still we know just by the official timeline that RotRL starts years before RoW starts. The existence of the timeline doesn't depend on the necessity to run things in a certain sequence. That it can be ignored so easily just shows how clever the Paizo approach to that topic has been so far.

*sigh* no - I'm saying the connection between the two doesn't rely on one happening before the other.

Question: Does Curse assume Rise ran first?

Answer: No it doesn't - there is a link between them but nothing that says 100% that Rise ran before Curse. You can assume it does as easy as you can assume it doesn't, and it makes no difference.

I'm not talking about any overall Paizo timeline - I'm talking about these two AP's.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

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If a GM can adjust Rise of the Runelords so that a player can play a goblin character... I'm pretty sure a GM can adjust any AP so that it can run in any order she/he wishes in their campaign.


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Paizo Charter Superscriber; Pathfinder Companion, Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

I think the tagline about the timeline "thundering forward" is being taken out of context. I'm reasonably certain that there will be no "huge time jump forward" of any kind. This AP will be set, by default, in 4718, just as any AP before has more or less silently assumed that is was set in Golarion's year equal to our real world year plus 2700.

What that quote about the timeline means is this: since the inception of the Pathfinder Campaign Setting in 2007, which means that is was 4707 in Golarion at that time, Taldor has been static. It has been detailed a few times, most notably in the Gazetteer, the Campaign Setting hardcover (both 2008/4708), the Taldor, Echoes of Glory Companion (2009/4709), and the Inner Sea World Guide (2011/4711). In all this time, all of 10 years, nothing of note has happened in Taldor, and nothing has really changed there. This AP now will actually change things. The Grand Prince will probably die, or at least get sick enough, and trigger a succession crisis that will play out over the run of the AP. That will be, I guess, the "thundering forward" of the timeline. The dominoes that have been set up 10 years ago will finally start to topple.

And yes, when future APs after August 2018 come to Taldor, they will probably assume that this AP has happened, and since that usually assumes that some PCs "won" the AP, and since the AP assumes that the PCs work for Princess Eutropia, this will probably mean that in a hypothetical product in the future, Taldor will likely be ruled by Grand Princess Eutropia. However, that might not even be important for a hypothetical later Taldor AP.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

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Correct. "Thundering forward" is flavor only in this case—don't read too much into it. As with all our APs, the amount of time that it takes for your group to complete it will depend on your group's play style.

And I can't think of any previous AP we've done over the past decade that really cares who's in charge of Taldor. Indeed, many APs don't really care who's ruling the current region they're in, really.

If we do another AP in the future that depends on a specific ruler in Taldor, we'll cross that bridge when we get to it, but it's not something that's gonna matter for most of them (as it hasn't mattered for the ones we've already done).

RPG Superstar 2014 Top 16, RPG Superstar 2012 Top 16

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So, I went to the Adventure Path Q&A at PaizoCon, and much of it was about War for the Crown. I *think* I'm OK posting these spoilers, but I apologize if not.

For what it's worth, I think it's going to be awesome. Anyway, spoilers for what Paizo's planning; some of these notes may be a little scattered as there was a lot to keep track of.

War for the Crown:

They debated calling it War of the Crown, which would have had a familiar acronym. :)

The campaign will be "James Bond meets Game of Thrones" with stabbings, chases, Disguise...

"Shadowy cabal that makes things happen." I don't remember what that refers to, but it's in my notes. :) Might have been that that's sort of the players' role, as opposed to leading the actual armies and whatnot...

Book 1: Crownfall, by Thurston Hillman. You begin as minor aides at a senatorial dinner, where nothing of interest happens. Until assassins. Then you're in a "death Senate."
Book 2: I missed the name of Book 2, by Richard Pett. You're recruited by Eutropia (after coming to her notice in Book 1) to get squatters off her land. This will involve intrigue, as opposed to simply using brute force (which is probably true of most of the AP, though there'll be plenty of the latter too).
Book 3: Twilight Child, by Ron Lundeen. You help Eutropia recruit neighboring provinces, arriving in Yanmass to ask for help, where you find your rivals doing the same thing. "Stab divs, fight a drake." Big twist here -- calling upon more published works by Paizo -- that I don't want to reveal because I feel like it should be a surprise (though I'd guess it'll be spoiled at some point).
Book 4: City in the Lion's Eye, by Mikko Kallio. Go to Zimar, the power base of Eutriopia's main rival for the throne. You take out his spymaster -- who you can then impersonate to coopt his network, or just take out his spy network.
Book 5: The Reaper's Right Hand, by John Compton. Go to Axis to fight Taldor's first emperor and get his blessing for Eutropia's claim. But he's missing.
Book 6: The Six-Legend Soul, by Amber Scott. Another big twist that I certainly wasn't expecting and again don't want to spoil. Let's just say things go to poop and it sounds like it's going to be a lot of work to fix.

Some other notes from the Q&A:
* Qadira is "a fairly big side player in the middle of the adventure" (Zimar is right on the border, after all), but you don't go there. They were concerned it would be "too much of a distraction."

* Pyratheus (sp?) is the name of Eutropia's main rival for the throne.

* You'll have influence over armies but won't always be commanding them.

* There'll be options for an LG solution for all challenges (said after a comment about how you could potentially poison an army's water supply).

* May want to play Tomb of the Iron Medusa beforehand.

* Taldor was compared to the Sun King era of France.

* Norgorber features in Book 5.

* Other factions vying for the throne are "kind of detestable." I think this was following a question about could players choose/back patrons other than Eutropia. It was considered but there's only so much space in APs and you can't really do three different adventures in all of them.

* I asked about links to the Armies of Exploration, and they discussed working in relics, which are magic items imbued with extra magic, especially when dealing with aspects of their history.

Also, though not related to the AP specifically, Crystal Frasier debuted her amazing fritter dance. It was a highlight of the panel. :)

The Exchange

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Ckorik wrote:

Question: Does Curse assume Rise ran first?

Answer: No it doesn't - there is a link between them but nothing that says 100% that Rise ran before Curse. You can assume it does as easy as you can assume it doesn't, and it makes no difference.

I agree with you in so far as CotCT probably could have started before RotRL had been concluded. Possibly it could even have ended before the conclusion of RotRL (if I don't miss anything saying otherwise.)

Still there's the fact

do I really need to spoiler this?:
that before the Red Mantis could use Vorel's phage it had to be discovered first by Aldern Foxglove, delivering the rats to Xanesha who sent them to the Red Mantis (by the way she sent it to Korvosa; that was established in Seven Days to the Grave; or rather the Red Mantis "spirited it away to Korvosa"), so as written, CotCT cannot start before the start of RotRL

So nothing to assume here, the facts are clear and aren't changed by the other fact that this is so easy to ignore that it actually isn't even worth to be discussed over several pages of this thread.


Paizo Charter Superscriber; Pathfinder Companion, Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

Awesome, thanks for the information, motteditor! Can anyone fill in the name of book 2? Has the Q&A perhaps been recorded?

The Exchange

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motteditor wrote:
great informative stuff

regarding book 2: Who cares about the title, it's written by Master Pett so it should probably be "Way #xyz to make your player( character)s losing sanity points" anyhow.

And I mean that in a good way.


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Paizo Charter Superscriber; Pathfinder Companion, Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

Spoiler:
"death senate"
sounds a bit like a scenario similar to "Designated Survivor". Intriguing...


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WormysQueue wrote:
motteditor wrote:
great informative stuff

regarding book 2: Who cares about the title, it's written by Master Pett so it should probably be "Way #xyz to make your player( character)s losing sanity points" anyhow.

And I mean that in a good way.

Gotta love having Master Pett whittling away at players' sanity. The characters, who cares. ;)


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motteditor wrote:

So, I went to the Adventure Path Q&A at PaizoCon, and much of it was about War for the Crown. I *think* I'm OK posting these spoilers, but I apologize if not.

For what it's worth, I think it's going to be awesome. Anyway, spoilers for what Paizo's planning; some of these notes may be a little scattered as there was a lot to keep track of.

** spoiler omitted **...

I admit, even though my interest in Taldor is very limited, that sounds spectacular so far


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Paizo Charter Superscriber; Pathfinder Companion, Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

Spoiler:
Crownfall
does indeed sound James-Bond-like :-)


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Well, it's no Castorhage, but I'm sure Mr. Pett will have some... experiences... for the players to "enjoy". XD

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