If you follow Jon Brazer Enterprises on Twitter or Facebook, you may have seen the announcement that we are working on our next major 1e Pathfinder project. We call it the Book of Beasts: Character Codex. This book is going to be similar to the NPC Codex by Paizo in that it provides 20 NPCs—one for each level—for each class detailed in the book. This way you always have an NPC at the level you need for that class. Unlike the original Codex, this book will focus on classes not in the core rulebook. We will be covering classes detailed in the Advanced Player’s Guide, Advanced Class Guide, and Ultimate Magic.
The obvious question is, “Why do this now?” Pathfinder 1e is no longer supported by the main company and at least some portion of the audience has moved to the new edition. So why continue to support the older edition? First and foremost, we at JBE prefer the older edition. This is the edition we enjoy, and we want to continue supporting it. Why didn’t we do this book years ago when it was still the current edition? Honestly, I always expected Paizo to do it. I learned a strong lesson from the Book of the River Nations, where we took the OGL Kingmaker rules and reprinted them in a standalone book for players: namely “don’t do books that I expect the main company to do in the future.” While the book sold incredibly well at the time and is still one of our top 3 selling books of all time, sales of it essentially ended the moment that Ultimate Campaign was released. So we held off on a number of very good ideas for Pathfinder 1e that we expected to be done by the primary publisher. Now that they’ve moved on and we are still here, we think now is a good time to produce those books and adventures we talked about before. Watch this space for more Pathfinder 1e books and blog posts.
We will be releasing this book as a subscription and bundling it all up when complete. We’re borrowing this idea from some of our fellow publishers that the earlier you subscribe to this project, the lower the price will be. The price will go up as we add more PDFs to the subscription. So if you know you are going to want this, subscribe as soon as it comes out. What will subscribers get? They get the individual PDFs and a PDF of the final Book of Beasts: Character Codex Compendium as well as a coupon to order the final print version at a reduced price. As an added bonus, subscribers will also get the Hero Lab classic files of the characters. We will be selling them separately for those that are not interested in the full subscription, but subscribers get them included.
So what is the scope of the Character Codex Subscription? As mentioned above, we’re limiting the classes we’re drawing from the Advanced Player’s Guide, Ultimate Magic, and the Advanced Class Guide. We will be utilizing feats, spells and archetypes from these books plus the core rulebook, Ultimate Combat, and the Advanced Race Guide. That will provide you with some excellent NPCs from a diverse set of books. Some quick math though: 18-ish pages for 17 classes in those three books comes to over 300 pages for the NPCs. Note that doesn’t include any possible appendixes we know we’ll need (eidolons, mounts, familiars, etc) let alone any we haven’t thought of yet, nor anything else that will require pages (i.e. Title Page, OGL, etc). That is more than a little intimidating for a company our size. Currently, the Book of Heroic Races: Advanced Compendium is our largest book at around 250 pages and that took 2 years and a lot of sweat to finish. So we are thinking of covering 12 classes in this outing. That puts this project at around 200 pages before everything mentioned above. While still a stretch, it is considerably more manageable.
The question then becomes which classes do we include. The warpriest is almost ready to send off to the editors, and we have artwork picked out for the arcanist, magus, and slayer classes so they’re definitely in. That still leaves us 8 classes to pick. This is where you come in. Tell us what classes you want to see by voting in the poll below. If you don’t see the poll because of the browser you are using or various settings or if there are some classes you want covered above all others, please leave us a comment below.
Are you excited for this project, for additional Pathfinder 1e support? Is there something you want us to produce that is not yet available? We want to hear your voice. Tell us your thoughts. Post a comment and let your voice be heard.