Pathfinder: Kingmaker


It’s tuned for parties, but I’m sure many will try the solo-challenge. If it’s doable or not probably depends on your level of patience and willingness to min/max as well as (I assume) drop the difficulty down. I can’t imagine you could win some of the fights with over a dozen enemies on the screen with a single character. Any one of them rolling a 20 with an attack is going to be a bad day.


Thanks. Yeah with Pillars you can just move the difficulty down and it works great. I guess I will watch some playthroughs of this one to see how it is.


Has anyone tried this (beta, I suppose) on a laptop with integrated graphics? I’m about to go on a trip where I’ll be stuck with my 2015 MacBook Pro, and I was curious if it might run.


I put a little video together for those that wanted to see it in action.


No timestop!? It was in BG2 and worked fine!


I am torn. Eldritch Soundrel or archaeologist?

Also, see of the archetypes we’re underpowered in pen and paper. Hopefully, they aren’t in this version.


Even if I love to think this game may be super awesome… I think I day patch and a week or two would do it well. re: Bard tale.


I’m curious about this one myself, but I’ve come around to this way of thinking with pretty much all epic RPGs these days. Anyone rushing to play these kinds of games as soon as they come out – especially when they’re from relatively untested developers, as is the case with this Pathfinder game – is just asking for heartbreak. Kristi, you mention a week or two, but I consider that optimistic. It seems the most prudent thing to do is give these games at least a month or so.



Yeah a few of these games need some – what’s the word? Hmmm… “seasoning” may be the word. Might be 3 months .


I’ll take one for the team. I’m bored and have been waiting for a new D20 game forever. Like, since Dragon Age:Origins.

God, I hate bullshit one-off rpg systems that borrow from MMOs.


Id like to know if the combat is similar to PoE and Tyranny. While I like the game world in those games, the combat was super repetitive and dull. I found myself doing the same things over and over. Leveling up did not unlock a bunch of cool new abilities, just similar but “different” abilities. I do not want to get into another RPG like that.

Oddly, I enjoyed the combat in D:OS2, even though I had a much more limited set of skills.


How familiar with D&D 3.0 or 3.5 are you?


I think I played 3rd edition, maybe 3.5 d&d like decades ago…

However, you played a lot of PoE and PoE 2. How does it feel to you? Similar or different?


Well, this is a difficult comparison because I think we are at odds philosophically with regards to PoE, because to me the skills in those games were pretty fun and the combat was compelling and I enjoy diving into that stuff. As such, the crunchiness of D&D satisfies me quite a bit.

But looking at what you describe as likes and dislikes, I’d be remiss if I told you Pathfinder is going to have a ton of amazing combat skills and options at every turn. I mean, a basic Barbarian can Rage and then swings her sword like a pro, but she’ll Rage automatically for you* and select a target and she’s off to the races. Other than selecting a target, you aren’t doing anything with her. Fighters don’t even have Rage though they do have some tricks if you spec them towards said tricks, like trip attacks. I suppose Barbarians can get access to trip attacks as well, they are just feats anyone that meets the requirements can pick up. Are trip attacks in this? I think they are, actually, but I don’t know for sure. Most fighters are just tanks** and what you are looking for with lots of abilities and skills are actually spell casters, maybe a mid-level Ranger or Paladin with spells and some neat options. You could play as a Magus, they have quite a few tricks up their sleeve but can be hard to build out correctly/well and a very micro-intensive.

I recorded a video a few posts up this last weekend and there is some combat in there in the second half, if you want to take a look at some examples of early game combat.

*This reminds me, there is SOME AI going on here, to bring comments from the AMA together and folks such as @stusser being a little bummed about a lack of AI management, because I know for a fact the barbarian drops Rage at the start of combat without me doing it, and maybe other examples as well I wasn’t paying attention to?

**PoE and PoE2 has a neat system of making melee opponents that break from you feel the pain with a Disengagement attack, which has a higher chance to hi/crit. D&D has an “attack of opportunity” but it’s just a regular attack, so it’s harder in Pathfinder to protect your weaker back row characters from charging enemies. Just a heads up. Though, in D&D/Pathfinder you can draw an attack of opportunity from an enemy simply by being in melee range with them when you drink a potion, or fire a ranged weapon, so there are more off-turn attacks being made in that way.


Did that email to backers with details on keys go out? I must have totally missed it as I didn’t see anything come in over the weekend.


No, and folks are getting understandably antsy about it…


yeah, I just put together the pieces based on your video you put out yesterday!!! thanks for the personal update Scott!!!


Yeah, D&D 4E was the Gold Star poster child for interesting combat decisions every turn, regardless of character class. Every single class had multiple At-Will, Encounter (1x/fight), and Daily (1x/day) powers, almost all of which had unique targeting, damage, add-on effect, and to-hit properties that could wildly reshape the battlefield every turn. Not even to mention when you start getting into Opportunity Attacks, Prepared Actions, Reactions, etc. – lategame 4E combat was a deep, crunchy tactical puzzle with an absurdly oversized possibility space.

All of which required an extremely solid understanding of the underlying mathematics and systems on at least the GM’s part, and a not-insignificant amount of planning, math, and adaptability on the part of the players building and running the individual characters. Couple that with very barebones guidelines on roleplaying and skill usage, and the game turned a lot of D&D fans off of the game permanently. . .

. . . hence Pathfinder, which returned to the very different set of complexities found in 3/3.5E D&D. Far more Skills, simpler fighter-classes, more complex and powerful spellcaster classes, and fights that were less boardgame tactical and more classically D&D-esque. Hitpoint totals were much lower for end bosses, and the paths to combat competency were much more clearly drawn. In 4E, a frontline attacker might well use Wisdom as their to-hit and damage Stat, while in 3E/Pathfinder, barring enormous feat investment and good gear, if you want to hit things well, you’re going to want as much Strength as possible.

Which returns us to a classic issue in D&D: LFQW, or Linear Fighter, Quadtratic Wizard.

While a Fighter can absolutely obtain some combat utility powers and abilities (Power Attack is the classic example: sacrifice a small amount of to-hit probability to deal more damage?) as they level up, and while there are some modest tactical decisions to be made (moving more than a small 5-Foot Step to re-position sacrifices your ability to make a “Full Attack,” which at high levels might include 3-4 big hits with your primary weapon, or even more if you’ve specced into the sadly inefficient Dual Wield Feat chain), at the end of the day, in most fights, Fighters gonna hit things with swords. Gunslingers going to shoot things with guns. Barbarians going to Rage and then hit things with stuff.

Meanwhile, as you approach mid- and high-level play, Wizards are routinely, you know, Stopping Time itself, crafting whole sub-dimensions with unique physics to build towering fortresses in, delayed blast double fireballing entire armies to death, summoning unspeakable horrors from the Nine Hells. . . *

They’re playing vastly different games, more or less.

* I cannot guarantee the ability to do any of these things specifically in Kingmaker


Interesting, I was just able to generate a backer key for Steam. Add it to my Steam library, but sadly, the key won’t download/ install yet.


Thanks! I was also able to. I had two keys, one for “early access” and one for “digital rewards” and I wasn’t paying attention so I don’t know what they actually were, but both keys are entered now. I think I ended up with the Imperial Edition, looks like, probably because I paid $110 for the Beta Access (and then another $25 for Alpha, iirc). I hope this game ends up good - I put a lot of money into it already…