So...Folca


Paizo General Discussion

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What's going on Paizo?

You published mechanically incentivised rules for child abuse.

You have spells which specifically replicate real world methods of child abuse, and give them to followers of the daemon/deity Folca.

You were called out for this at the time of release, you were called out for this in a previous thread. Two senior members of staff have admitted, elsewhere, that this was a mistake (Erik Mona and James Jacobs) but there's no official statement on it.

You've had several weeks to craft something, several weeks to make something public.

If, as said, you intended to remove that text, it would have taken me a day to rework that page of the indesign document, splash in some filler text and recreate it. If needed i'll do it for you.

For those just joining the party, here are some links that you might want to review:

https://twitter.com/Sphynxian/status/930465923588386816

Here's the description of Folca in the Book of the Damned:

https://i.imgur.com/HdpCNLU.png

Here's Erik Mona saying it was a mistake:

https://twitter.com/erikmona/status/923645136579452928

And here's James Jacobs saying the same:

http://www.enworld.org/forum/showthread.php?594081-Harassment-At-PaizoCon-2 017/page11&p=7261191&viewfull=1#post7261191

It's 3 weeks since those statements on twitter and enworld. It's nearly 2 months since the book was released and the first questions of what the hell are you doing were being asked.

To make clear, again, the book includes mechanically incentivised child abuse.

+2 charisma bonus for abusing a child
Other benefits:

Unnatural lust
Your target is filled with lust and desire for a single creature or object as designated by you at the time of casting. That creature or object must be within the spell’s range and perceivable by the target of the spell. The target is filled with the compulsion to rush to the subject of its lust and passionately kiss or caress that subject on its next turn, taking no other actions. If the target would not normally have lustful feelings toward the designated creature or object, it receives a +4 bonus on its saving throw.

Modify Memory
You reach into the subject's mind and modify as many as 5 minutes of its memories in one of the following ways.

*Eliminate all memory of an event the subject actually experienced. This spell cannot negate charm, geas/quest, suggestion, or similar spells.
*Allow the subject to recall with perfect clarity an event it actually experienced.
*Change the details of an event the subject actually experienced.
*Implant a memory of an event the subject never experienced.

Veil
You instantly change the appearance of the subjects and then maintain that appearance for the spell's duration. You can make the subjects appear to be anything you wish. The subjects look, feel, and smell just like the creatures the spell makes them resemble. Affected creatures resume their normal appearances if slain. You must succeed on a Disguise check to duplicate the appearance of a specific individual. This spell gives you a +10 bonus on the check.

These spells specifically, exactly, replicate real world, actual abuse. They make the victim 'want it', they make the victim forget it, and they make the victim perfect for them. As I said previously, in email and posts, as the victim of abuse who suffered the above 'spells' in real life, I find their inclusion disgusting and disgraceful.

Why was this published?
Who made the decisions to include this material?
What are you specifically going to do about this?
How can anyone trust that you won't continue to promote this again?

You've had 7 weeks to address this, and there is no public, official statement on it. Yes, two members of staff have said it was a mistake, but neither were speaking on behalf of the company, and you shut down the forum thread here, on your forums, where you could have spoken about it, and the related public statement didn't touch on this at all.

You ignored emails about it, you ignored threads about it, only when it went viral across the net, in connection to a number of other issues, was anything said, and yet there's still no official public statement from you.

Does Paizo want to be the child abuse company, or not?

Grand Lodge

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Wow, how dare they give literal incarnates of evil a deity who does a bad thing. Hint: these are the guys you're fighting against.

Silver Crusade

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Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Hey OP, have you ever heard of World of Darkness?


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If a player looks at the rules for how Folca and Folca's cultists work and sincerely goes "that's awesome, I want to play that," I'm pretty sure the issue with the player.

And Paizo's never really shied away from making the bad guys horrible.

Declaring Paizo to be the "child abuse company" because of one evil demigod reeks of histrionics.

Edit: Though Mr. Mona's and Mr. Jacobs's responses probably means we're not going to see any more of Folca outside of the Book of the Damned, and thus we'll never have the opportunity to kill the s!$$ out of some Folca cultists in a published adventure. That's disappointing.

Folca would've fit right in as an additional source of antagonists in, say, Irrisen.


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Starfinder Superscriber

Harumph

I say Harumph my good man that you see this made up controvesy!

Sersly, bad guys are bad, do we all understand this?

The Exchange

Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

It's my understanding that Paizo's policy is to generally only do errata on reprinting. Is this write up of Floca an issue? It appears so. Is this a drop everything and fix it now issue? To the OP it appears, yes. But the books aren't going to be recalled over this so that damage is already done, so at best youre getting something taken out of a pdf, this write up continuing to exist in electronic form just doesn't seem like a big enough issue to prioritize over countless other things.


Jurassic Pratt wrote:
Wow, how dare they give literal incarnates of evil a deity who does a bad thing. Hint: these are the guys you're fighting against.

Or, not, because you can have a neutral follower.

Just to be clear, will you be making the checks to see if the child makes their save from unnatural lust and then describing what happens to your players, and then having their mind wiped in front of them, or after and describing in detail what they find out when they try and piece it all together? Or are you cool with one of your players doing this and describing in detail (because it requires a specific obligation) how they torture and abuse that child to give them their +2 bonus?

Gorbacz wrote:
Hey OP, have you ever heard of World of Darkness?

I have, yes, that setting has nothing to do with this.

Zhangar wrote:


Declaring Paizo to be the "child abuse company" because of one evil demigod reeks of histrionics.

Given how many people accused Weinstein's accusers of histrionics, or assorted other abusers over the years, i'll take that as my badge of honour, thanks!

Once again, +2 charisma bonus for child abuse...

DJEternalDarkness wrote:

Harumph

I say Harumph my good man that you see this made up controvesy!

Firstly, I didn’t make it up, Paizo did, when they published mechanically incentivised child abuse rules. Secondly these rules, and Paizo as a company, have been roundly condemned around the internet for this.

But of course all the initial responses here are a rejection. We don’t, as humans, want to consider that the people we like, or the things we like, might have done something wrong, because that runs into self-awareness and cognitive dissonance, it’s tough to consider that a thing we like might also be bad.

And so the reactions to Spacey and Weinstein and Bill Webb and Mentzer and Ratner and all sorts of other people who’ve been exposed as doing something wrong, something bad, something terrible.

Ignoring and dismissing it, is the same as condoning it.

Paizo staffers, on their own time, on twitter and enworld have admitted that it was a mistake, but this has not been followed up on by Paizo as a company.

There are several hundred posts about this around the net, several hundred twitter, forum and google+ posts, but there is no formal statement by Paizo.

I expect better from Paizo, I want better, hence the original post, hence calling them to account, again, because they've ignored or dodged the issue on a corporate level and that's not acceptable.

Shadow Lodge

What would you have them do?

Paizo Employee Customer Service Manager

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This thread already has a lot of elements to it that make it very difficult for this to not devolve rapidly. If you want this thread to remain open everyone posting in it needs to remain civil, respectful and be mindful of their words and wording.
If you want to try to rephrase someone's discussion points try saying "what I am hearing you say is..." instead of "so what you're saying is..." as that can escalate bickering and debating on semantics instead of content of your points and counterpoints.

edit: removed a post and reply. Please steer clear of rephrasing someone else's words in a baiting or disingenuous manner.

Paizo Employee Customer Service Manager

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Let's not drag people's posting history's into this.


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TOZ wrote:
What would you have them do?

Officially take ownership of the mistake in what was published, with a company statement about it, and why it was wrong. Explaining the decisions behind it and how they came about, not least because there's a definite difference between the material submitted by the freelancer who worked on it and what was finally published. Why did that happen, how did it happen?

Remove the material from the PDF (this is not a big job).

Make a public statement about their standards with regard to child abuse and child endangement, making clear the company's standpoint and attitude to this.

And never publish anything anything like it again.

Scarab Sages

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Pathfinder Starfinder Society Subscriber

Yeah, they're obviously supposed to be the villains. If players go off the deep end in performing evil actions, that's on them. Paizo shouldn't have to censor material for the vast majority of gamers just to prevent what might happen with a few fringe elements.

The Exchange

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Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

It's a bonus granted to followers of a demon, explicitly evil people. Could a follower of Floca start out as neutral, maybe, but since child abuse is a pretty horrificly evil thing they wouldn't stay neutral for long.

It'd be one thing if what floca did was a benefit to not explicitly evil beings, then you could make a valid case that it's promoting child abuse, this isn't promoting child abuse just because it mechanized a benefit for evil people who engage in it any more than becoming more powerful by engaging in torturous demon rituals to increase your power promotes torture. Calling it pronotion distorts not only the book it's in but the entities in the book who benefit.

That being said, I agree the material shouldn't have been published not because its a promotional of anything but because it's in bad taste and it is an admitted mistake.

Silver Crusade

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Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Folca's obedience is only "+2 for sexually abusing children" if you really want it to be.

If you really want it to be, black tentacles is endorsing hentai time.

If you really want it to be, anything devil-related is endorsement of Satanism.

If you really want it to be, animate dead is endorsing violation of real-life religious taboos.

If you really want it to be, D&D is a game that teaches you about how murdering sentient beings makes you literally stronger.

Scarab Sages

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Pathfinder Starfinder Society Subscriber

Plus I'm pretty sure Folca is supposed to be an embodiment of folk horror stories meant to frighten children into behaving, like Krampus.


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This game also has rules for murdering people, gaining power from such, stealing, and various profane actions.

Not every game is going to be rated G, nor will every game shy away from these topics. Most, if not all of Folca's worshipers will be the guys your heroes are removing from the world.

This is as much or as little an issue as the community decides to make it, much like the demon and devil worship, use of magic, murder, theft, adultery and any other "adult" topic that exists in this or other RPGs.

Silver Crusade

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Pathfinder Companion, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

This is clearly from the title one of the darkest books Paizo has ever published. (Horror Adventures is the only one that might compete with it.) Because I dislike very dark content, I chose not to buy this book. I'm not sure I understand why people would buy such an obviously dark book and then complain that one evil character is so dark.


RocMeAsmodeus wrote:
Plus I'm pretty sure Folca is supposed to be an embodiment of folk horror stories meant to frighten children into behaving, like Krampus.

Unnatural lust, modify memory and veil have nothing to do with 'behaving', the link between child abuse and 'well good children don't get abused' is abhorrent and discredited. That is not the theme of the daemon, and explicitly described as a mistake by James Jacobs, albeit, as per my original link, in a personal manner, not on these forums and not as an official statement.

Gorbacz wrote:

Folca's obedience is only "+2 for sexually abusing children" if you really want it to be.

Unnatural Lust, Modify Memory, Veil

You can’t dismiss those as ‘if you really want it to be’ when those are the mechanical benefits of following/worshipping Folca.

“Stalk a child and make him witness or endure a horrifically brutal event. Promise him that you will return, and then leave him with that haunting thought. Gain a +2 Profane bonus on Charisma checks”

That’s child abuse, it just is, it’s not ‘if you really want it to be’ it’s child abuse.

I was abused, I find this abhorrent, disgraceful and disgusting from Paizo. I found it abhorrent 7 weeks ago when they ignored the complaints, with only personal comments coming after it went viral. And, to be clear, this has gone viral, there are hundreds of comments about this across twitter, google+ rpg.net and enworld calling out this material as being unfitting of paizo and unacceptable.

Paizo knew, 7 weeks ago, that this was an issue. Heck, they knew it was an issue when they were developing it, when they went from the ‘hint but not describe’ as Folca was previously, to mechanically incentivised child abuse.

And yet here we are, with people excusing and dismissing it in this thread.

How many DMs will be rolling saving throws for children being the targets of unnatural lust, having it wiped out by modify memory, so your NPC can abuse again, or making them a perferct victim with Veil?

How many DMs will be tracking the +2 Profane bonus because your abuser had stalked and tormented a child prior to the players’ encountering them?

How many players will use 'well it's in the book' as a defence, because we all know that that happens.

To paraphrase from someone else, speaking on this subject, there is a big difference between ‘Bob abuses children because he’s playing his character that way/that’s the kewl grimdark thing the DM wants to do’ and ‘Bob is playing his character that way because the book mechanically incentivises him and gives him the powers to do to that’.

The abilities granted specifically replicate real world child abuse. In fact they make them even better because it’s ‘save or abuse’. The behaviour and actions are encouraged by the mechanics.


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CPEvilref wrote:
RocMeAsmodeus wrote:
Plus I'm pretty sure Folca is supposed to be an embodiment of folk horror stories meant to frighten children into behaving, like Krampus.

Unnatural lust, modify memory and veil have nothing to do with 'behaving', the link between child abuse and 'well good children don't get abused' is abhorrent and discredited. That is not the theme of the daemon, and explicitly described as a mistake by James Jacobs, albeit, as per my original link, in a personal manner, not on these forums and not as an official statement.

Gorbacz wrote:

Folca's obedience is only "+2 for sexually abusing children" if you really want it to be.

Unnatural Lust, Modify Memory, Veil

You can’t dismiss those as ‘if you really want it to be’ when those are the mechanical benefits of following/worshipping Folca.

“Stalk a child and make him witness or endure a horrifically brutal event. Promise him that you will return, and then leave him with that haunting thought. Gain a +2 Profane bonus on Charisma checks”

That’s child abuse, it just is, it’s not ‘if you really want it to be’ it’s child abuse.

I was abused, I find this abhorrent, disgraceful and disgusting from Paizo. I found it abhorrent 7 weeks ago when they ignored the complaints, with only personal comments coming after it went viral. And, to be clear, this has gone viral, there are hundreds of comments about this across twitter, google+ rpg.net and enworld calling out this material as being unfitting of paizo and unacceptable.

Paizo knew, 7 weeks ago, that this was an issue. Heck, they knew it was an issue when they were developing it, when they went from the ‘hint but not describe’ as Folca was previously, to mechanically incentivised child abuse.

And yet here we are, with people excusing and dismissing it in this thread.

How many DMs will be rolling saving throws for children being the targets of unnatural lust, having it wiped out by modify memory, so your NPC can abuse again, or making them a perferct victim with Veil?

How many DMs will be tracking the +2 Profane bonus because your abuser had stalked and tormented a child prior to the players’ encountering them?

How many players will use 'well it's in the book' as a defence, because we all know that that happens.

To paraphrase from someone else, speaking on this subject, there is a big difference between ‘Bob abuses children because he’s playing his character that way/that’s the kewl grimdark thing the DM wants to do’ and ‘Bob is playing his character that way because the book mechanically incentivises him and gives him the powers to do to that’.

The abilities granted specifically replicate real world child abuse. In fact they make them even better because it’s ‘save or abuse’. The behaviour and actions are encouraged by the mechanics.

How many? Likely very few. Your theoretical player and GM would represent a tiny fraction of a percent of the players of the game. As was said above, is the problem going to be with the game rules or with the player/GM?

Do you have the same issue with players who gain power from killing? Do you worry that they are going to do it in real life? Should it not be included because someone knows someone who was killed or died?

It would be expected that the players and GM would discuss these issues before they play rather than grabbing the book and gleefully exclaiming "YES! I can get powers from abusing children! My dream character can finally be realized!"

If that hypothetical player exists, one may have had clues before this book came out, and again, the problem may not be the book.

Silver Crusade

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Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

If management has admitted an error, then they should also take steps to rectify the error. It doesn't matter if it's a small job or a big job.

While they're at it, they could maybe fix the art for Nocticula. To something a little less Male-Gazey?

If you're going to make a book with mature themes you have to be incredibly careful about what lines are being crossed, and how you're representing the game.

I understand that books are complex, but unless direct action is taken to rectify mistakes, then this is another bit of lost faith in Paizo as a company and Pathfinder as a game.

Silver Crusade

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Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

CPEvilref, my comments aren't aimed at you. It's pretty clear where you're coming from and where are you headed. Changing your mind never crossed my brain as a valid option.

I'm aiming at the jury.


DM_aka_Dudemeister wrote:

If management has admitted an error, then they should also take steps to rectify the error. It doesn't matter if it's a small job or a big job.

While they're at it, they could maybe fix the art for Nocticula. To something a little less Male-Gazey?

If you're going to make a book with mature themes you have to be incredibly careful about what lines are being crossed, and how you're representing the game.

I understand that books are complex, but unless direct action is taken to rectify mistakes, then this is another bit of lost faith in Paizo as a company and Pathfinder as a game.

That 'Nocticula' is one of a list of issues recently highlighted on social media and how certain themes are depicted in Paizo products (gluttony versus wrath versus lust), and I absolutely agree with you, but while I thought about making it a broader 'hey, what the hell are you doing?' issue, I chose to drill down into this one specific one. But absolutely, it's bad and poor and full of male gaze and lust=lust objects rather than lust personifications with the other 'sins' depictions.

Scarab Sages

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Pathfinder Starfinder Society Subscriber

Modify Memory may be more likely to be used to make a child think something horrific happened, rather than cover it up.

Veil sounds as though it is more likely to make the caster, or another creature or object, appear more terrifying to the child.

Unnatural Lust.... yeah, I'll give you that one. Even if intended for another use, it has overtly sexual connotations. A variant "Unnatural Gluttony" or something may be more appropriate.


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Pathfinder Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

I am afraid I am yet to see a problem, I have never seen anything in a Paizo product which I can concieve of as endorsing evil actions (such as child abuse) as good things which people should do. All evil actions (Human sacrifice, murder, sexual abuse etc) are linked to evil groups which people should understand are evil.

Indeed a player could design a character who is incentivised to commit child abuse in most campaigns that character would the promptly be killed by the majority of characters who are incentivised to kill evil characters.

If you are running a campaign where characters are evil (as I have done) you have to be careful that
1) You players (and yourself) can draw the line between fiction and reality
2) You do not stray into the comfort zone of the players (this also has to be a consideration when providing opponents to good characters)
3) In general things like Torture and Human sacrifice are best left as fade to black off scene events.

Personally I suspect the a cultist of Folca would be outside my and my players comfort zones as a PC and probably not someone I would use as a villain but I think claiming the publication encourages child abuse is going too far


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DM_aka_Dudemeister wrote:

If management has admitted an error, then they should also take steps to rectify the error. It doesn't matter if it's a small job or a big job.

While they're at it, they could maybe fix the art for Nocticula. To something a little less Male-Gazey?

If you're going to make a book with mature themes you have to be incredibly careful about what lines are being crossed, and how you're representing the game.

I understand that books are complex, but unless direct action is taken to rectify mistakes, then this is another bit of lost faith in Paizo as a company and Pathfinder as a game.

Nocticula is demon lord of lust. She has a charisma of 40. One of her abilities is actually called "Seductive Presence" for Shelyn's sake! It is one thing for random women to be drawn in a sexual way, but this the queen of all succubi, if anything, it would be weird for her not to be drawn in that way. Dear lord, what's next? Being afraid people will be offended at religious themes in the game and getting rid of the celestials and fiends? I rather not go back to the 1980's level on censorship if it's all the same to you. Mature themes can happen is this game. If you don't like it, don't use it at your table, but don't try and force everyone else to play like you because something that offends you.

Malefactor, out.


RocMeAsmodeus wrote:

Modify Memory may be more likely to be used to make a child think something horrific happened, rather than cover it up.

Eliminate all memory of an event the subject actually experienced. This spell cannot negate charm, geas/quest, suggestion, or similar spells.

This is what happens in actual real life abuse. Someone deliberately chose that spell.

RocMeAsmodeus wrote:


Veil sounds as though it is more likely to make the caster, or another creature or object, appear more terrifying to the child.

You instantly change the appearance of the subjects and then maintain that appearance for the spell's duration. You can make the subjects appear to be anything you wish.

This is done by actual abusers, dressing their victims in particular ways, posing them in particular ways etc. This is again, directly replicating real life abuse and methods of abuse.

And, even if you were right in your guess, that's still 'be a better abuser'.

RocMeAsmodeus wrote:


Unnatural Lust.... yeah, I'll give you that one. Even if intended for another use, it has overtly sexual connotations. A variant "Unnatural Gluttony" or something may be more appropriate.

The spell's only purpose is abuse, it's sexual abuse, the spell. You can conceive of other uses for the other spells, albeit the connotation with Folca is clear, but unnatural lust is sex assault the spell, save or be abused. It's abhorrent that Paizo would consider this an acceptable spell to publish, and then to add to the bonuses for a child abuser.

Silver Crusade

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Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Aaand let's not forget about the nice little box of text in the introduction part of the book, page 5. I'll go ahead and copy-paste the entire text of it below. I realise that it's a copyright stomp and I won't be edgy if this gets deleted, but:

"DISTURBING THEMES AHEAD
Pathfnder RPG Book of the Damned deals with many dark
and intense concepts. The topic of demons and devils is not
for everyone, nor is exploration of the themes these fends
embody and the practices they demand of their worshipers.
You should make sure that your game group is comfortable
with the contents of this book before using them in play—if
even one player is uncomfortable with including some of
the concepts in here, you should set those portions of the
book (or the entire book) aside and focus on other plots for
your game.
When running games that include horrifc content like that
presented in this book, player consent (including that of the
GM) is the most important thing to consider. Please refer to
pages 190–191 of Pathfnder RPG Horror Adventures for a
more in-depth discussion of this important topic."

Grand Lodge

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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

My personal perspective, as a survivor of abuse (and not speaking for any other survivors of abuse, as we are all our own people) is that Folca is one of my favorite parts of Book of the Damned.

My reasoning? He is one of many villains through which I can channel my frustration with my own trauma. And yet, because of his nature as a terrifying creep, an objectively evil fiend, and a clear villain: I am actively looking forward to beating him up. I am absolutely, one-hundred percent, wanting to make a campaign focused around becoming Folca's unmaking and helping people who have been hurt by him.

It is a representation of my own trauma, and representation, both of good forces and really really terrible forces, matters.

I will say, time and again, that Folca is not a light-hearted topic for everyone. And especially that he and his worshipers should never, I repeat, NEVER, be presented as anything other than an absolutely horrible incarnation of evil.

This is why, in making a book about evil deities, I am glad they covered more than just the """polite""" evils, as they are seen by western civilization. It shows that evil has many facets, and I am glad he is in this book to demonstrate that this terrifying and likely triggering force exists.

It's ALSO why I'm glad that he's in this book in particular. This book has a trigger warning at the front. If you are going to get up in arms because a creepy force was presented in a book that explicitly states in its opening that it touches on really dark themes, then I have some bad news about film ratings...

And, for the evil-versus-neutral debate... I will also note that, per the rules text of the Book of the Damned, that the Souldrinker prestige class (i.e. the one that grants boons for Folca at an accelerated rate) requires you to be neutral evil. Make of that what you will.


Gorbacz wrote:
dark and intense concepts.

Dark and intense concepts, and +2 charisma bonus for child abuse, and sexual abuse spells are not the same thing.

Silver Crusade

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Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Malefactor wrote:
DM_aka_Dudemeister wrote:

If management has admitted an error, then they should also take steps to rectify the error. It doesn't matter if it's a small job or a big job.

While they're at it, they could maybe fix the art for Nocticula. To something a little less Male-Gazey?

If you're going to make a book with mature themes you have to be incredibly careful about what lines are being crossed, and how you're representing the game.

I understand that books are complex, but unless direct action is taken to rectify mistakes, then this is another bit of lost faith in Paizo as a company and Pathfinder as a game.

Nocticula is demon lord of lust. She has a charisma of 40. One of her abilities is actually called "Seductive Presence" for Shelyn's sake! It is one thing for random women to be drawn in a sexual way, but this the queen of all succubi, if anything, it would be weird for her not to be drawn in that way. Dear lord, what's next? Being afraid people will be offended at religious themes in the game and getting rid of the celestials and fiends? I rather not go back to the 1980's level on censorship if it's all the same to you. Mature themes can happen is this game. If you don't like it, don't use it at your table, but don't try and force everyone else to play like you because something that offends you.

Malefactor, out.

I was not arguing against her inclusion in the game.

But golly here is a version of Nocticula where she is depicted as being powerful and lustful. She is not objectified in this image, she's the one with power.

Here is a more neutral one where again Nocticula is the one holding the viewer's gaze without being objectified.

I read your argument that as a demon lord of lust she must engender lust in the viewer. My argument is that if she embodies lust, then shouldn't she be full of lust. The person who holds the gaze that makes the audience uncomfortable as she objectifies them.

Silver Crusade

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Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Also a trigger warning does not absolve the publisher of responsibility for bad decisions.

The Exchange

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Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
DM_aka_Dudemeister wrote:
Also a trigger warning does not absolve the publisher of responsibility for bad decisions.

Sure but who gets to decide it's a bad decision and how do they get to express that it's a bad decision.


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CPEvilref wrote:
RocMeAsmodeus wrote:

Modify Memory may be more likely to be used to make a child think something horrific happened, rather than cover it up.

Eliminate all memory of an event the subject actually experienced. This spell cannot negate charm, geas/quest, suggestion, or similar spells.

This is what happens in actual real life abuse. Someone deliberately chose that spell.

No that is only one thing you can do. If you actually looked at the spell, you would know that it can
Modify Memory wrote:

Eliminate all memory of an event the subject actually experienced. This spell cannot negate charm, geas/quest, suggestion, or similar spells.

Allow the subject to recall with perfect clarity an event it actually experienced.
Change the details of an event the subject actually experienced.
Implant a memory of an event the subject never experienced.

Really you're getting awfully offended over something that isn't even the worst thing Paizo has "encouraged" people to do by mechanical benefits being able to be drawn from it. Do you think Paizo promotes cannibalism because of the Cook People hex? That they encourage drug use because of the Psychedelic Psychic Discipline? That they promote self harm because of Abraxus's Obedience? That they support skinning humans to use their skin for drums like for Angazhan? That they support torture because Andirifkhu requires you to torture something smaller than you to death? Of using a child's bones to carve incantation's to your flesh? Burning things alive for Flauros? Drowning someone in swamp water and impaling it's corpse for Gogunta? Gyronna's is just making ANYONE's life worse, no age required? Do you really think Paizo wants you to do these things? If not, why do you think that Paizo specifically wants you to torment children?


Shaudius wrote:
DM_aka_Dudemeister wrote:
Also a trigger warning does not absolve the publisher of responsibility for bad decisions.
Sure but who gets to decide it's a bad decision and how do they get to express that it's a bad decision.

Well as the chief creative officer, and the creative director have personally said it was a bad decision - you did read the links I included in the OP right? - together with the hundreds of posts on rpg.net, enworld, twitter, facebook and google+ all criticising it, I think it's pretty safe to say it was a bad decision.

There's just a difference between two members of staff saying it, and paizo officially saying it, explaining it and making clear their steps to address it, hence the OP.


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Is it a bad decision? Or is it a decision that not everyone agrees with?

There are any number of other hot topics within the book or even the same spread of pages that aren't getting the same attention in this conversation. Arson, torture, murder, mutilation, drug abuse, heresy, self mutilation, cannibalism, stalking and so on. It is a whos who and whats what of possible triggers and "bad decisions."

Where does the line get drawn?


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Malefactor wrote:
Really you're getting awfully offended over something that isn't even the worst thing Paizo has "encouraged" people to do by mechanical benefits being able to be drawn from it. Do you think Paizo promotes cannibalism because of the Cook People hex? That they encourage drug use because of the Psychedelic Psychic Discipline? That they promote self harm because of Abraxus's Obedience? That they support skinning humans to use their skin for drums like for Angazhan? That they support torture because Andirifkhu requires you to torture something smaller than you to death? Of using a child's bones to carve incantation's to your flesh? Burning things alive for Flauros? Drowning someone in swamp water and impaling it's corpse for Gogunta? Gyronna's is just making ANYONE's life worse, no age required? Do you really think Paizo wants you to do these things? If not, why do you think that Paizo specifically wants you to torment children?

Yes, I am awfully offended by mechanically.incentivised.child abuse. You're right.


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Adventure Path Charter Subscriber
DM_aka_Dudemeister wrote:
I read your argument that as a demon lord of lust she must engender lust in the viewer. My argument is that if she embodies lust, then shouldn't she be full of lust. The person who holds the gaze that makes the audience uncomfortable as she objectifies them.

Honestly, she should be both, do both, embody both as needed for the situation. So I have no problem with her being depicted to elicit lust - it's a major method in how succubi prey on their targets. And your own post underscores that they have, in fact, shown her in multiple ways, so it's not like she's only pigeon-holed in the porny pose.

Silver Crusade

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Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Shaudius wrote:
DM_aka_Dudemeister wrote:
Also a trigger warning does not absolve the publisher of responsibility for bad decisions.
Sure but who gets to decide it's a bad decision and how do they get to express that it's a bad decision.

Well apparently both Erik Mona and James Jacobs both admitted it was a bad decision.

Anyone can express that, for example it's been expressed on these very forums in this very thread.

The book was published 7 weeks ago, it went to the printer long before that which means somebody edited and approved the above rules text, somebody ordered and selected art. There are lots of decisions that happen before a book sees print.

I understand that along the way things get missed, glossed over or aren't sensitivity checked (there is only so much time a publisher has to make a book). I am sympathetic to that.

But Paizo, needs to take responsibility, and take action to rectify issue.

I am a big booster of paizo, a loyal customer, an evangelist for their game. However, this issue is one among many recently. Good writers and devs are leaving the company and there are freelancers who won't work with the company any more.

Paizo is a company that has always stood for inclusivity. Everyone should feel welcome at the table. Lately though, it feels their commitment to that value is dropping. As a company Paizo needs to do more, because as much as I love this game, the years of adventure (more than I could play or run in a lifetime). I won't support a company that brushes their mistakes under a rug, rather than taking responsibility for them.

Feel free to go through my post history, mostly you'll find me defending paizo as a publisher and the devs from nerd entitlement.

So for me to be criticising Paizo for these issues, means that I'm seeing a pattern of something truly troubling.


So if they didn't get a mechanical bonus or spells that replicate something that real abusers do then there wouldn't be a problem?

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Bill Dunn wrote:
DM_aka_Dudemeister wrote:
I read your argument that as a demon lord of lust she must engender lust in the viewer. My argument is that if she embodies lust, then shouldn't she be full of lust. The person who holds the gaze that makes the audience uncomfortable as she objectifies them.
Honestly, she should be both, do both, embody both as needed for the situation. So I have no problem with her being depicted to elicit lust - it's a major method in how succubi prey on their targets. And your own post underscores that they have, in fact, shown her in multiple ways, so it's not like she's only pigeon-holed in the porny pose.

The hardcover line gets a lot more visibility than the soft cover line.

Paizo Employee Customer Service Representative

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Lets back off with the suggestions that because someone has brought attention to something they have an issue with, they think other things they haven't mentioned are acceptable.

Silver Crusade

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Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Also do not read my criticism as an objection to mature material.

I actually found the vast majority of content of this particular book useful, interesting to read and full of useful plot hooks.

If that's what you take away from my post, please re-read.

What I'm saying is mature material needs additional attention, needs to be actually mature (not what a teenage boy thinks of as mature), and needs to handle difficult topics with sensitivity.

I'm not saying that Paizo has to hit the mark perfectly on the first try, but if they create something and don't take full responsibility for it after the fact that's an issue.

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