Thursday, July 2, 2009

Paizo's 7-7-7 Sale

In response to a post on the message boards, Paizo is celebrating their 7th anniversary by giving fans a deal on Paizo products.
Starting 7/1 and lasting until 7/7 Paizo has 7 products that are going to be priced at $7. 7 days, 7 products for $7, that seems like a pretty good deal to me.
The products listed at this price are The Seven Swords of Sin module, Pathfinder #7- Curse of the Crimson Throne Chapter 1, a Harrow Deck, Rise of the Runelords map Folio, Map Pack: Trounament and Flip-Mat: Mountain Pass as well as The Anubis Murders, a novel by Gary Gygax.

So check out the deals and pick up some deals while they last.

Link to the 7-7-7 Paizo page.

Keeping 3.x alive

I, like many other fans of 3rd edition D&D (3e - Pathfinder), have been eagerly awaiting the release of the Pathfinder RPG core book, but I can't help wondering exactly why we are so looking forward to this rules revision.
Granted many of the "broken" mechanics in 3.x are to be resolved in the PfRPG and the rules set as a whole is expected, given what we've seen in the beta, to be better. However, the game is only a tweaked version of 3.x and Paizo has stated that it is intended to keep the books we already have useful. Which is what 3.x fans want.
Most of us have house ruled the broken parts of 3.x to the point it is "better" than the original, at least in terms of how we play individually with our groups. We all have tons of books to reference and years of familiarity with the system and our house rules. The thing that kind of puzzles me, and I'm as guilty of it as anyone else, is if we all want to keep playing 3.x why do we need a new revision and more books? Why don't we stick with the current version and the house rules we've come up with? Also if Paizo is making Pathfinder compatible with the books we already own, what is our motivation to buy anything other than their Core Book, the Beastiary and maybe the GM guide?
Here are some of my "theories" regarding these questions:
1. We love Paizo and want to support them. They made great material for 3.x and we are confident that if D&D can be fixed, they can do it much better than WotC. I think it comes down to a "stick it to the man/evil corporation that royally pissed us off" type of mentality. We want Paizo to succeed and WotC to fail out of some motivation to prove that we were "right" and WotC was wrong. Then when Paizo steps in to buy the D&D brand all will be better again... at least that is how some seem to imagine it happening. I'm not saying I'm one of them but I can't deny that the thought has crossed my mind. Of course it will never happen.
2. We want an official "fixed" version of the game. Our house rules may be great, but we want something that comes from professional game designers. This actually seems like the most likely reason and my primary motivation for buying Pathfinder. I like their version better than my house ruled version.
3. We've come to enjoy and think of 3.x as the true/best version of D&D and dismiss 4e. I know that 4e is the official version of D&D, but when I play the game, which I happen to like, it doesn't feel like D&D to me. It is a really good game on its own, but it just doesn't feel right to me personally. I have no better explanation than that. It is a matter of personal preference.
4. WotC has just pissed us(me)off too many times. Which could have some influence on how 4e is perceived by fans. A lot of people can forgive and forget, but I and many other still hold a grudge for the attitude that WotC has had as well as some of their actions over the past few years. While they are both companies whose goal is to sell product and turn a profit, Paizo seems much more customer oriented and fan friendly. Paizo staff actually post and interact with fans on the message boards on a regular basis. They seem to actually listen to what fans have to say about their products. They released the core rules beta, a nearly 500 page book, for everyone to download for free! How could you not like them?
5. Paizo seems to have a better track record of getting product out when they say and so far hasn't promoted anything that they can't deliver.
6. All during the 3.x era Paizo put out some damn good D&D content. Most of it was better (IMO) than what the WotC team put out. Of course this can be said of several other companies as well,but Paizo is the one that decided to keep 3.x alive. We/I trust them to continue that tradition.
7. We like buying new books. As loyal fans of 3.x we want to keep using our current books and system, but we want new books to add to our library with updated info. Paizo is making this happen.

On a bit of a side note, if we want the 3rd edition rules to stay strong, that means buying more new books. Paizo wouldn't release this product unless they expected fans to buy the products that support it. That means we will be expected to buy the settings, sourcebooks and subscriptions to Paizo's Pathfinder line of products.
Granted Paizo gives us good reason to buy those supporting products, but when you think about it, many of the complaints we had with 4e, such as buying new books are made moot. We will be doing exactly what we complained about in the first place. The only difference being it is the same system, just revised... even though it is technically a completely different game.
PfRPG is different enough that it can stand on its own with out every 3.x book that has been released thus far, but it is made to be compatible with what we already have. So it is possible that those of us cheering that our library of books will not be made obsolete, will only end up with an even larger library much of which is likely to be "revised" versions of books we already own. Which, unless I missed something, still ends up making the books we own "obsolete". If we don't buy new products 3.x will die off and become another old system that is only supported by fans and maybe some smaller publishers. This has kind of created a vicious cycle.
If we don't buy the new books, the system is likely to fail. Yet the fact it is compatible with the books we already own, thus not requiring the purchase of new books, is the reason so many of us like Pathfinder. If we don't buy the new stuff, 3.x dies (in the sense that no new products are being released) and if we do we just end up replacing what we already own anyway.... ad nauseum.
I still plan on buying and supporting Pathfinder, but I did kind of think all of this was odd when looked at from a different perspective. I don't begrudge and won't belittle anyone who chooses 4e as their default fantasy setting anymore than I would someone for choosing Spirit of the Century over Hollow Earth Expedition for pulp games, but I can kind of see the hypocrisy in it all.
It is all a matter of personal choice and nothing more.

*** Update: I have seen on the Paizo message boards that, according to Eric Mona, Paizo plans to release 2-3 sourcebooks for Pathfinder each year. Not 6-10, but 2-3. Of course there will still be their modules and adventure paths for those that want to buy/subscribe to them, but fewer actual sorcebooks will be released in an attemtp to control rules bloating.***

By the way I don't know if this is current or if I missed this at some earlier date or just forgot about it but I found a page with a pdf deal from Paizo. If you enter "PDFLove" at check out when purchasing a pdf @ Paizo's store you get 35% off your purchase. If it is old and I forgot about it, the deal may have expired, if not then I may be buying some new pdfs.

35% off deal.

Here is what I can only assume is an April Fools joke from Paizo about the d21 system. Some how I missed it until tonight.

Pathfinder RPG

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

RPGB Network in wikipedia?

This has only the slightest relevance to anything, but I was looking for some Pathfinder news/info on the web and decided to see what wikipedia had to say on the subject. To my surprise there were actual posts by Chad Perrin: SOB used as a reference. How Paizo fixed D&D and What does "compatibility" mean for Pathfinder? were both listed in the External Links and Reference section, as are the Pathfinder Wiki, Pathfinder SRD and PfSRD.
While I know that wikipedia can be edited by anyone I just thought that it was interesting to see a fellow RPGBN member's blog posts listed there as a reference. Even more interesting is the fact there are 2 SRD sites for a game that is not even released yet... at least not officially.
I've said it before and honestly just feel like saying it again. I am really looking forward to the release of Pathfinder and plan to be gaming with the 3.x rules for many years to come.

Wikipedia page for Pathfinder

Also in Pathfinder news, and while it is rather old news at this point I haven't seen much about it, but Monte Cook has joined the Pathfinder team as a rules consultant. A friend of mine says that should give Pathfinder a little more cred as the true successor of 3.5. Personally I think Paizo produced enough quality content for 3.x ( a lot of it better than WotC) that they don't need anymore credibility, but I won't complain if Cook is onboard.

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

I'd buy that for $1

A Latvian firm is giving loans of $100-1000 in exchange for their souls. The borrowers have 90 days to pay back the money or they take possession of their soul. How does that work exactly?

Original article

Monday, June 29, 2009

$1.99 comics

According to Bon Alimagno over at Vampirella comics are going to attempt selling the book for $1.99. This is an attempt to bring back readers and get the character back into the top 100. They are calling for fans to join their Myspace page and Twitter to help promote the character's 40th anniversary. They claim they might be able to do the lower price, unlike Marvel and DC, due to low overhead and smaller staffing.
While Vampirella has never been one of my all time favorite characters, I have enjoyed the book the few times I picked it up in the past. For $1.99 I'm willing to give it a try.

Original Article
Myspace page

Sunday, June 28, 2009

The dead are rising...

Everyone pretty much knew it was going to happen but the original Captain America is defintely coming back from the dead. The news of his return can be found all over the net and from what I hear it made it to some of the major news networks as well.
I for one am a bit disappointed. While I thought it was idiotic to break the "only Bucky and Uncle Ben stay dead" rule, I admit that Bucky Cap has had some of the best Captain America stories I have ever read. I would say that Captain America's book has been one of the best books at Marvel with Bucky at the helm. Steve Rogers was going to come back, that was no secret, but Marvel had a good thing going with the current star of the book. It would have been nice to get to know the character a little bit better before they brought the old guard back.
Marvel is also rumored to be bringing back the Scarlet Spider over in the Spiderman books. Now I was a fan of the character when he was originally introduced and was disappointed when they killed him off. I actually quit reading Spidey for a while. I even liked his low budget costume, which was much more realistic than Peter Parker, a teenage boy when he got his powers, sewing a costume with a very complicated design. I admit the whole clone saga was a pretty crappy story as a whole, but a character with a lot of potential came from that story. Unfortunately he paid the price for the horrible taste the story that spawned him left with fans. Hopefully, Marvel will bring old Ben back with a bit more dignified story this time around.
We all know Dick Grayson has replaced Bruce as Batman and Damian has taken up the mantle of Robin, for now. DC seems to have plans for the new dynamic duo for at least the next year, so when will Bruce return? My vote is never. Even though they've only been a team a short while, I am already enjoying the new direction of the Batbooks more than I have in years. I say it is time for a changing of the guard... permenantly. Of course we all know that won't happen. Bruce will be back in the cowl in the near future, my guess is next summer.
Who else has returned from the dead in recent years? Here is a list of the characters from DC and Marvel who are again among the living. These are just the ones I can recall off the top of my head. If I think of more I'll add them later.

Superman... although that was a long time ago I decided to add it to the list anyway.
Aunt May (not sure how that happened. her death story, the start of the clone saga, was a really good Spidey story. Then she almost died recently to start the OMD story.. or as I call it WTF.. she is a tough old bat.)
Barry Allen (Flash)
Bart Allen (Kid Flash... still think the explaination for that was a bit dumb... he wasn't even that important of a character and he didn't die using the speedforce like every other speedster that has come back... he was beat to death! )
Wally West (not really dead... living in another dimension for a little bit??? that's dumb)
Green Arrow
Green Lantern (Hal Jordan)
Superboy (Connor Kent)
Jason Todd... he still sucked the second time around.
Captain Marvel (the Marvel comics version... not the real one)
Blue Beete (Ted Kord...temporarily taken out of the time stream, don't know if he is actually dead again or not??? Also isn't he suppose to be coming back as a Black Lantern/Zombie? Will there be 2 Teds running around? I hate time travel)
Norman Obsorn
Harry Osborn( he was dead wasn't he?)
Wilson Fisk
Ghost Rider(s) (haven't both of them died at some point? if not they will)
Jericho (how many times has this guy died anyway? Didn't his dad gut him or something?)

Dead Characters that will more than likely be returning soon:
Martian Manhunter
Bruce Wayne
Blue Beetle (Ted)
Jason Todd... didn't they kill him again? If not they should.
Reverse Flash

** *Blackest Night may make the returning soon list much longer. I didn't add those characters, such as Bruce's parents, because I think they are just going to be zombie like things. Even though zombies rock, they do not count as living and were not added. That may change as the story unfolds.***

Characters that should be killed off permenantly just because I don't like them ;-) or I like/would like newer versions better.
John Stewart
Martian Manhunter
Charles Xavier (is he dead now or alive? He's died and came back so many times I can't keep track)
Magneto (same as Xavier)
Jason Todd
Flash (Barry)
Batman (Bruce... I like the character, really, but it is Mr. Grayon's turn to prove himself as the new Dark Knight... he's earned it and I bet most fans like it.)
Captain America (Steve Rogers... again I like the character, but the current stories are just so damn good I hate to see them screw it up with an event.)
All of the New Gods, except Darkseid... he is one bad mamajama....
All those damn Kryptonians... How can you be the Last Son of Krypton when there is 100,000 other Kryptonians running around? Not to mention the dogs and cats and monkeys, it's ridiculous.. although I do want to see a super badger. It could dig a Burrow of Solitude and fight for animal injustice... and table scraps. What do badgers eat anyway?(Update.. wikipedia says badgers eat worms, small mammals and poisonous snakes... badgers are bad @$$)

FYI for all the fans of the characters I listed in the "should be killed" list... these are just characters I personally don't like and you should not take this opportunity to be offended. I have no control over the creative direction of these characters and my opinion has no impact on the characters. This is just my opinion and should be taken as the good natured jab it is intended to be. Despite the fact that I am right and most of those characters suck, the list was made in jest and should be seen as such.