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Chris Avellone on Pathfinder: Kingmaker, Kickstarter details at VentureBeat

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Chris Avellone on Pathfinder: Kingmaker, Kickstarter details at VentureBeat

Interview - posted by Infinitron on Sat 3 June 2017, 16:24:23

Tags: Alexander Mishulin; Chris Avellone; Oleg Shpilchevsky; Owlcat Games; Pathfinder: Kingmaker

Pathfinder: Kingmaker newsbits continue to trickle in. Owlcat Games have posted an "interview" with Chris Avellone on the game's Facebook page, which is made up of questions solicited from the community. It starts out with a few general Pathfinder questions, but quickly gets down to the brass tacks of CRPG design. Here's an excerpt:

Why did you choose Kingmaker as the setting for the CRPG? Why the River Kingdoms?

It was the decision made before I came on the project (work had already begun using Kingmaker, and the companions were fleshed out as well – usually biographies and arcs). That said, I don’t have any issues with the setting or the adventure path at all, I think it was a good choice (further confirmed by fan feedback).

I like the Kingmaker adventure path, it makes for an interesting computer role-playing game, the Stolen Lands are a perfect place for building a kingdom from scratch, and even better, the adventure path format gives Owlcat and I “breathing room” to add more narrative and quests without disrupting the classic adventure path itself (for players that know it and love the adventure path, they’ll find plenty of the same characters, areas, and situations, but often with an added element we’ve been able to bring to it on the developer side).

The Kingmaker Adventure Path has its own story. How faithful will the plot of the CRPG be to the AP? Should we prepare for any surprise twists?

Players familiar with the adventure path will be pleased at seeing many of the characters and setting from the pen-and-paper version of Kingmaker, and while there are some changes, I think players will be pleasantly surprised by how these changes complement the existing material – especially the companion interactions and the ways companions interact with some of the elements of the Kingmaker plot.

Outside of the main plotline, will there be plenty of side quests?

Yes – it’s one of the pillars of Pathfinder to reward exploration, and side quests are a large part of that.

Are we going to encounter iconic characters? Maybe even as companions for our party?

Yes, one of the Pathfinder iconic characters, Amiri, can join your party in Pathfinder. She has some of the best lines in the game so far, and it’s no surprise – she’s fun to write for.

Everybody needs a little love, right? Can we have relationships with our companions?

Yes, but not just romance (just romance is limiting). The companions are with you for a reason, and that reason may change based on your actions – for good or for ill, and they’ll pay attention to your behavior and act accordingly.

Being the hero may be fun, but we all know the dark side has cookies. Will there be possibilities to be really, despicably evil?

Yes. And cruel. And cunning. I generally find “smart” evil (ex: talking two enemies into killing each other) to be more fun than demanding more money as a quest reward or being a mass-murderer.

Will our decisions and actions have an impact on the world? Does the story offer replay value, offer different outcomes and endings depending on how we play?

Yes, it’s one of the hallmarks of an RPG, and Kingmaker is no different. We’d like players to play it more than once and get a different experience each time. The companion arcs alone have several options that are shaped throughout the game, and that means the story can change considerably depending on your party composition.

How much creative freedom will we get with quests? Will most of our problems be solved with the sword or will there be alternate, more unorthodox solutions like in tabletop?

Speech and diplomacy (especially in your role in ruling your kingdom) are part of your arsenal, both in the court and on the battlefield. Of course, swordplay is still an option, but you may find other ways to achieve your goals with much different results.

Will companions react to our choices? Let’s say one of our companions is really good, but we keep making evil decisions. Would that companion eventually leave or even betray us?

Yes, alignment clashes (and acting against the principles a companion upholds) would cause them to lose faith in you, leave, or even turn on you. They aren’t simply walking backpacks and stats, they have their own personalities and things they hold dear.
There's also an interview with a couple of Kingmaker's developers over at VentureBeat, which has some details about the upcoming Kickstarter. It'll have a base funding goal of $500,000, with stretch goals for adding classes, companions, quests, areas and also developing the module's "Kingdom system". Interestingly, the interview took place before PaizoCon, and at that point the Kickstarter was planned to start this weekend. LESS T_T has spotted a Thunderclap page for the game, which is set to go off on June 7th. I guess that's the new launch date?

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