Pathfinder, Paizo Publishing‘s post-Dragon project, is expected to ship the first volume next week, but another early peek is available. Paizo is offering up a free PDF download of Pathfinder: Player’s Guide to Rise of the Runelords, a 16-page character-building aid that will get players ready for the Pathfinder adventures to come. As Joshua Frost of Paizo mentioned in our podcast recently, a print version of the Player’s Guide will be available later this month, singly ($2) and in five-packs ($10) to supply whole gaming groups. Note that gamers who subscribe to Pathfinder before August 13th get a Player’s Guide for free. Paizo still offers free downloads of the Free RPG Day module D0 – Hollow’s Last Hope as well, so D&D players have no excuse to be unprepared when Pathfinder rolls for initiative. Click below for a look at the Pathfinder release schedule.
Paizo Publishing press release follows:
Introducing Pathfinder Chroniclesâ„¢â€”Paizo’s New Campaign Setting
Curse of the Crimson Throne to be the title of the second Pathfinder Adventure Pathâ„¢.
Paizo Publishing announced today that the title of its new campaign setting is Pathfinder Chronicles. Paizo also confirmed that the GameMasteryâ„¢ Modules line of fantasy adventures and the Pathfinderâ„¢ Adventure Path books would be set in the Pathfinder Chronicles setting. All books released in that setting are published under the Open Gaming License and are compatible with the world’s most popular fantasy roleplaying game.
In the world of the Pathfinder Chronicles, the triumphs of heroes and the workings of villains are recorded in a constantly evolving codex of tales spanning centuries. For much of written history, world events followed charted routes. Oracles and seers mapped out the future in the stars above, and their prophecies always gave a reliable view of the ages to come.
Until a god died a century ago. No one saw that coming, and now, the old prophecies are failing. Oracles go mad and seers desperately try to account for the loss of the future. While some cry out that the world is at an end, they’ve been doing so for 100 years now. And the world’s still here. It’s just unclear where things are going. The future of Golarion, the world of the Pathfinder Chronicles campaign setting, is open and ready to receive the triumphs and failures of a new generation of heroes.
“Pathfinder’s Adventure Paths as well as the GameMastery Modules are set in the world of Golarion, yet they also mesh perfectly with the core game experience,” said James Jacobs, author of Pathfinder #1: “Burnt Offerings” and the Editor-in-Chief of Pathfinder. “Most groups already have a favorite campaign world, and by building our adventures on classic themes, it should be a simple matter to adapt any Pathfinder Adventure Path or GameMastery Module to a campaign setting of your choice.”
Paizo Publishing also announced today that the title of the second Pathfinder Adventure Path will be Curse of the Crimson Throne. The first installment of Curse of the Crimson Throne will appear this February in Pathfinder #7 and will run through Pathfinder #12 in July 2008.
Pathfinder #7 kicks off the Curse of the Crimson Throne Adventure Path this February with an adventure titled “Edge of Anarchy” by Nicolas Logue (author of Pathfinder #3: “The Hook Mountain Massacre” and GameMastery Module D1: Crown of the Kobold King). The King has died, and the city of Korvosa is in chaos: riots, banditry, monsters, and mayhem are turning the normally safe streets of the city into a war zone. Desperate to regain control, Queen Ileosa seeks heroes to aid her before the largest city in all Varisia consumes itself from within. This volume of Pathfinder includes a gazetteer of the city of Korvosa, designed to supplement the player-oriented Pathfinder Chronicles Guide to Korvosa, along with a presentation on the mystical culture of the land’s indigenous Varisians and several new monsters designed for use in urban environs.
In March, Pathfinder #8 continues Curse of the Crimson Throne with “Seven Days to the Grave,” an adventure written by F. Wesley Schneider (author of the Pathfinder: Rise of the Runelords Player’s Guide). The civil unrest in Korvosa has been dealt with, only to be replaced by a far more deadly and insidious threat: horrific disease that leaves its dead deformed and faceless sweeps through the streets of Korvosa, death borne on the wind and steeped in the stones. Mass graves crowd the outer walls and plague doctors stalk the streets in a desperate attempt to prevent the sickness from spreading, yet is there something more to the plague than meets the eye? This volume of Pathfinder contains supplementary rules for handling large-scale urban disasters such as plagues and famines, and also presents a detailed exploration of Abadar, the god of cities and wealth. Several new monsters associated with sickness and disease round out the bestiary.
Pathfinder #9 approaches the halfway mark of Curse of the Crimson Throne in April with a Richard Pett (author of Pathfinder #2: “The Skinsaw Murders”) adventure titled “Escape from Old Korvosa.” Old Korvosa is under quarantine, a sprawling slum contained by roadblocks and guard posts manned by remorseless Hellknights and sinister plague doctors. While the rest of Korvosa stifles under an increasingly brutal martial law, the quarantined streets of Old Korvosa descend into true bedlam. Yet the one man who may hold the truth behind the perils that have brought Korvosa to its knees is lost inside the quarantine zone. Can he be rescued from the clutches of a new menace rising in the festering pits of Old Korvosa, and what secrets does he know that could justify the bounties for his death? This volume of Pathfinder presents an in-depth exploration of the rakshasas of the Pathfinder Chronicles campaign setting and reveals details on Golarion’s most sinister network of assassins, the Red Mantis.
Other first quarter 2008 Paizo Publishing releases include:
Pathfinder Chronicles Gazetteer
From the frozen wastes of the witch-queen to the scorching deserts of Osirion, explore the world of Pathfinder and the GameMastery Modules like never before. This 64-page, full-color gazetteer contains information about all of the major kingdoms and cities of the Pathfinder Chronicles world, including Absalom, Cheliax, Varisia, and much more. A poster map details never-before-revealed locations, and allows readers to put Pathfinder Adventure Paths and GameMastery Modules into a single exciting context. The guide also includes information on deities, races, classes, and monsters unique to the setting. The Pathfinder Chronicles Gazetteer is compatible with the world’s most popular roleplaying game, but adapts easily to other game systems. Written by Paizo’s Publisher Erik Mona and Jason Bulmahn (author of GameMastery Module W1: Conquest of Bloodsworn Vale), the Pathfinder Chronicles Gazetteer will be available this January.
Pathfinder Chronicles Map Folio: Rise of the Runelords
By popular demand! Campaign in style with this handsome collection of maps designed for use with the Rise of the Runelords Adventure Path. Two huge poster maps detail Varisia, the home nation of the first Pathfinder Adventure Path, and Sandpoint, the player characters’ new home. Fifteen additional single-page full-color maps cover key encounter locations or wilderness areas from the Rise of the Runelords Adventure Path, adding visual flair for players and making the GameMaster’s life a lot easier. With cartography by industry veteran Rob Lazzaretti, the Pathfinder Chronicles Map Folio: Rise of the Runelords will be available this January.
GameMastery Module U2: Hangman’s Noose
A spiteful ghost haunts an abandoned courthouse in the metropolis of Absalom, and on the ten-year anniversary of a grave injustice it seeks its revenge. The heroes must unravel the mystery of the ghost’s demise before they too are given a guilty verdict and sent to the gallows. Written by Nicolas Logue, Hangman’s Noose is a low-level adventure for use with the world’s most popular fantasy roleplaying game and will be available this January.
GameMastery Critical Fumble Deck
The GameMastery Critical Fumble Deck is a sequel to this year’s wildly popular GameMastery Critical Hit Deck and is designed to balance out the system, allowing both minor and major mishaps to occur during combat. The GameMastery Critical Fumble Deck consists of 52 full-color standard-sized cards, ready to use out of the box with the enclosed rules and is compatible with the world’s most popular roleplaying game. Available this January.
Pathfinder Chronicles: Guide to Korvosa
The city-state of Korvosa, largest in all Varisia, has prospered over the last century since its abandonment by its founding nation of Cheliax. Its port brims with black-and-red-flagged shipsâ€”the colors of both Korvosa and Cheliaxâ€”endlessly trading fineries from the south for Varisian curiosities and her land’s natural bounty. As such, Korvosa rightfully claims to be the most cultured and civilized city in the region, yet visitors might also grant the city-state the titles of most decadent, exploitative, and socially stratified. This book serves as an exhaustive guide to the city, including details on all major points of interest, profiles on the city’s movers and shakers, and countless adventure hooks for enterprising GameMasters to expand upon. While designed for use with the Curse of the Crimson Throne Adventure Path, this information-packed supplement is useable in any fantasy RPG campaign. Written by James Jacobs and Mike McArtor (author of “Dragons of Golarion” in Pathfinder #4, a key feature detailing dragons in the Pathfinder Chronicles campaign setting), Pathfinder Chronicles: Guide to Korvosa will be available this February.
GameMastery Module J3: Crucible of Chaos
The Lost City has been found, hidden in a remote mountain valley. As adventurers rush to plunder its fabled treasures, a hungry terror prepares for their arrival. The dream of the Lost City is gone, warped by eldritch forces into a living nightmare that only the bravest can ever hope to escape. Written by Wolfgang Baur (author of Pathfinder #4: “Fortress of the Stone Giants”), Crucible of Chaos is a high-level adventure for use with the world’s most popular fantasy roleplaying game and will be available this February.
GameMastery Item Cards: Adventure Gear 2
Heroes need the right tools to get the job done. GameMastery Item Cards: Adventure Gear 2 adds a host of new items to their arsenal, from climber’s gear to a portable ram. This 54-card set allows heroes to keep track of their equipment in style and is completely compatible with all other GameMastery Item Card sets. Each of these full-color cards features a beautiful portrait of the item on one side with space on the back to keep notes. Available this February.
Pathfinder Chronicles: Classic Monsters Revisited
Pathfinder and the Rise of the Runelords Adventure Path famously re-imagined goblins, detailing their culture, mannerisms, and tactics in a way that made a boring old monster one of the most hotly discussed foes in fantasy roleplaying. Now, the minds that bring you Pathfinder have applied the same method to ten classic monsters, providing complete ecological discussions and adventure ideas involving orcs, ogres, goblins, hobgoblins, trolls, bugbears, and more in this lavishly illustrated, full-color 64-page overview that is both fun to read and fun to use at the gaming table. Written by James Jacobs et al, Pathfinder Chronicles: Classic Monsters Revisited will be available this March.
GameMastery Module W2: River into Darkness
Guarding an expedition into the deepest recesses of a dangerous jungle is no simple task. When that jungle happens to be the home of the Gorilla King, the job is downright deadly. Although the journey is fraught with danger, the destination promises great riches. But is the price too steep? Written by Greg A. Vaughan (author of Pathfinder #6: “Spires of Xin-Shalast”), River Into Darkness is a low-level adventure for use with the world’s most popular fantasy roleplaying game and will be available this March.
GameMastery Module D3: The Demon Within
For many years, a lone castle has stood on the edge of demonic lands, a beacon of light holding back a sea of darkness. But now it has fallen to the fiends who threaten to spread beyond to the civilized world. Demons infest the once righteous castle, and those who hope to retake it risk more than their livesâ€”they risk their immortal souls. Written by Tim Hitchcock (co-author of GameMastery Module E1: Carnival of Tears) and Stephen S. Greer (author of Pathfinder #5: “Sins of the Saviors”), The Demon Within is a mid-level adventure for use with the world’s most popular fantasy roleplaying game and will be available this April.
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Ive grabbed my download already. Gotta say it looks damn good. Every new campaign should have a built-in intro for the players like this.
Monte Cook’s Ptolus did this really well last year, with a large Player’s Guide to Ptolus. It’s encouraging that other companies are following suite. It’s also important that these books should be inexpensive, allowing the players to become invested in the setting for very little.