Pathfinder: Kingmaker hits funding goal on Kickstarter

There are many ways to make your Kickstarter campaign attractive. A clear pitch and a realistic target are two of the big ones. But there’s only one way to make success a sure thing: ask Chris Avellone to get involved. Pathfinder: Kingmaker [official site] is the latest project to employ this tactic, and it’s hit its funding target.

Owlcat Games’ $500k target for their adaptation of the Pathfinder tabletop RPG has now been surpassed, which means that it’s time to talk stretch goals. If the pledged amount hits $550k, camping will be added to the game, and it sounds a little bit more involved than simply having a nap in the woods.

Camping is more than just a “rest” button in Pathfinder: Kingmaker! Set up a camp and select who will be standing watch, to warn you in time about incoming enemies. Send an experienced hunter to gather good and listen to your companions discussing events of the past days, choices you made and places they travel.

Think Dragon Age: Origin’s lovely campsite, but with added management wrinkles. It sounds a bit brilliant, actually. To mark the funding milestone, a new $600k stretch goal has also been thrown into the mix: the Magus class.

Welcome the Magus, unrivaled master of magical melee, who is ready to use his array of destructive spells without interrupting his blade dance. His class features allow him to use spells and melee attacks at the same time, and, if the need arises, envelop his weapon in magical power, combining both arts into one.

They dance, they cast spells, they chop stuff up with swords — the Magus sounds like my kind of adventuring buddy. While this is the last revealed stretch goal, expect more to be announced as the campaign continues.

Future stretch goals will add archetypes (for all the classes), additional race choices, storyline expansions beyond the initial Adventure Path and more companions, (including a companion that’s dear to hearts of Pathfinder fans). Owlcat Games also wants to include more locations to visit, including an epic dungeon.

If you’re unable to contain yourself until next summer, when Pathfinder: Kingmaker will hopefully launch, the previously mobile-only card game, Pathfinder Adventures, is now on Steam. I have whiled away many hours with it on my phone and I’m just terrible at adventuring, it seems, but I’m not bitter.


  1. Someoldguy says:

    It’s promising to be a lot more like P&P Pathfinder than their previous games, so I hope it does well.

    • Eagle0600 says:

      My understanding is that they can’t legally replicate the P&P rules very closely because OGC (which they use heavily) does not apply to videogames.

      Can you show me where they promise this?

      • Someoldguy says:

        I can only do that by quoting screeds of text from their project updates. I don’t know what causes the problem for making games.

        They’re saying that they want you to be able to create the PnP characters that you’ve played or always wanted to play but didn’t think you’d ever level to the point where they get the cool powers you want to try. They mention classes, 300 feats and at least 15 wizard spells per level (1-3) already planned. Metamagic feats etc. It all sounds good so far. All that lot is out of their own source books, so it’s theirs to use. Not sure what parts of the OGC rules create an issue with CRPG implementation that play like the PnP version, but they seem to be saying that they’ve overcome it.

      • LexW1 says:

        Your understanding sounds incorrect. Have you got a quote to that effect? The Pathfinder rules have been used in electronic formats before, and Paizo have been trying to get a computer game made for 10+ years, without ever mentioning that in the various attempts.

        Given you can’t patent rules, only copyright them, the worst-case scenario is that they’d need to rename a bunch of spells/feats/classes/monsters, which wouldn’t interfere with the rules.

        All that said, it would probably be fine if they did have to re-jig the rules a bit, because Pathfinder is probably the least-balanced and most fiddly version of D&D that has ever existed (barring some obscure one that I’m forgetting). I say that having run and played it and just about every version of D&D from the last thirty-odd years.

        Keeping it low-level will help a lot though. I dunno how you’d even handle balancing a level 10+ PF CRPG. Maybe very very strictly limit resting and punish it harshly, even on normal difficulty?

        • johnpocalypse says:

          I wouldn’t say Pathfinder is the “least balanced”, but yeah it is probably the most complex version of D&D due to the sheer customization available to characters.
          If you’re looking for a good summary of details released so far you can go here.

        • elvirais says:

          I only used the one core rulebook in a recent campaign, no optionals, but from that I thought it was very smooth, not fiddly at all. To me it was a nice continuation of D&D 3.5, my favourite version so far (thought I admit I haven’t played 5 yet). I guess complexity quickly balloons when using other rulebooks.

  2. Kapouille says:

    Wow, I hope they get funding elsewhere as ~20K$ per individual in the celebrating picture isn’t a terrific salary (although a dollar probably does go further in Russia than in the Western world)

    • Unclepauly says:

      In soviet russia the dollar spends you.

    • mygaffer says:

      For projects like these the Kickstarter money isn’t the the only money, I guarantee you Paizo is putting money behind it and perhaps even other investors.

  3. Eagle0600 says:

    “And we want you to have a multitude of choices every time you level up your spell casting characters and every time you choose your spells for the day. Of course you won’t have to constantly rearrange your spells and you’ll be fine with just a basic set of spells in some parts of the game and on the easier difficulty settings. But we also strive to create challenges and environments that will make you stop and consider what spells to prepare for the task at hand.”

    This makes me optimistic. Still going to wait and see.

  4. racccoon says:

    I hope they are satisfied & stay clear of greed.

    There are still a few of old kickstarter campaigners who never know when to stop!

    Star Citizen only wanted 300k!
    Still begging up 100 MILLION & over. No morals. Just pure greed.

    Funding concept:
    Your giving money freely to someone you don’t even know.
    Your also likely to not ever see that money again if it pass’s a goal.
    You’ve funded a game that does not have too be finished.
    You’ve paid to test.
    You’ve paid to work!
    You are a 21St CENTURY SLAVE.

    You’ve paid to be this NEW AGE SLAVE with no chains, with no whips, you haven’t even left your seat!!

    How to stop this 21st century slavery & abuse:
    don’t pay for early access
    don’t pay for kickstarter!

    Build your business through business practices.
    Have goals, Have a plan, Have a name. Have structure.
    Work on your games, Release a finished game.
    Gain back RESPECT!!

    END & Abolish 21st CENTURY SLAVERY!! yep! its

    • Talsted says:

      You’re equating one of the most horrific atrocities in human history to people willingly contributing money to a video game. Contemplate that, and maybe try not to be a total piece of shit.

      • Unclepauly says:

        Which atrocity is he mentioning? Because I was under the assumption slavery was as common as farming in early human civilization(less common later but still too common).

    • Zallgrin says:

      Throwing 20 bucks at a Kickstarter makes you a slave? Jesus, what kind of backwards logic is that? Especially when you consider in what piss-poor conditions most indie devs work in – even with successful Kickstarters.

      I honestly don’t see how you can compare working years on a game for poor or no pay, and then go “Yup, the consumers are the real slaves! Those poor, poor things. They have suffered so much by giving 20 bucks to someone else QQ”

    • jp says:

      Or alternatively.
      Give money for a game that would otherwise not get made.
      Wait for results (hope for the best).

      I’ve never “paid to test or work”, just wait for the finished product.

      I do agree that some kickstarters are extremely greedy and look like scams, just don’t fund those.
      Early access I just avoid, they’re already making the game and technically don’t need money to finish it. Even though a lot them basically act like an uncertain kickstarter, where your money is gone even if the kickstarter basically fails, so let them finish it first.

    • Ghostwise says:

      Well, that was peculiar.

    • Premium User Badge

      Drib says:

      This is just astoundingly over the top.

    • Someoldguy says:

      What we had before crowd funding was: attract the attention of a Publisher, or your game doesn’t get made. Then you have to make any changes they say, cut whatever they say and ship when they say, whether it’s feature complete, bug fixed and ready for the big time or not. Then you only get to support it if they say and there’s no guarantee you won’t be firing your staff or closing your doors because your costs exceeded what you got paid.

      Crowd funding is hardly perfect but neither was the game industry before crowd funding came along. I like being able to put my money behind more niche products that probably won’t get made otherwise. Yes, it’ll probably ship late. Anything from 3 months to 3 years late. But I’ve used reasonably good judgement about the quality of the developers and – so far – none have produced a turd or disappeared into the ether. Of course there have been some solid 7/10 games that didn’t live up to the hype and even a 6/10 or two, but if you look at the publisher-backed competition over recent years they’re in exactly the same boat and more than a few games have been cancelled after years of effort.

      Sooner or later I’ll end up backing something that never arrives, but the price of backing is generally lower than retail and I’ll happily pay to see these games made. Without them I’d probably still be relying on The Witcher 3 for my RPG kicks because almost everything since has been crowd funded or a big disappointment.

    • hfm says:

      The game was going to be made regardless whether it got funded or not. The kickstarter campaign was just to see if they could get additional funding by fans who’s been clamoring for a proper Pathfinder CRPG.

      Directly from the devs:

      Pathfinder: Kingmaker has an existing schedule, an existing scope, and an existing budget, and that budget will allow us to achieve that scope on schedule. We already have a full team of people working on it, and we’re committed to doing it regardless of what happens with this Kickstarter. So why are we asking for your help? The answer is YOU—we need YOU to decide how big Pathfinder: Kingmaker is going to be. Success in this Kickstarter will allow us to increase the budget and the scope, delivering a bigger and deeper game on the same schedule.

      So. No. This game wasn’t hinging on the Kickstarter. But the kickstarter will make it larger in scope that it was originally going to be.

  5. Premium User Badge

    Drib says:

    How much is the stretch goal for uncanny valley Bioware-ish banging of all my party members?