Pathfinder: Kingmaker

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Pathfinder: Kingmaker
Pathfinder Kingmaker cover art.jpg
Developer(s)Owlcat Games
Publisher(s)Deep Silver
Director(s)Alexander Mishulin[1]
Programmer(s)Alexey Drobyshevsky[1]
Artist(s)Victor Surkov[1]
Composer(s)Inon Zur, Dmitry V. Silantyev, Sergey Eybog, Mikhail Kotov, Alexander Fomichev, Dryante
EngineUnity
Platform(s)Linux, macOS, Microsoft Windows
Release25 September 2018
Genre(s)Role-playing
Mode(s)Single-player

Pathfinder: Kingmaker is an isometric role-playing game developed by Russian studio Owlcat Games and published by Deep Silver, based on Paizo Publishing's Pathfinder franchise.[2] Announced through a Kickstarter campaign in 2017, the game was released for Microsoft Windows, macOS, and Linux on 25 September 2018.

Gameplay[edit]

The gameplay is modelled on the Pathfinder role-playing game and inspired by classic computer RPGs such as Baldur's Gate and Neverwinter Nights. It features a real-time-with-pause combat system and an isometric perspective. One of the game's distinguishing features is its emphasis on realm-building, with the player's decisions as a local lord affecting the rest of the gameplay.

Character customization is a key feature, along with an alignment system where a character's alignment can change due to player choice. While the player begins with only one character of their creation, the game is party-based as companions join them along the way.[3][4] These include both established Pathfinder characters and newly-invented characters.[2] The game is estimated to last around 80 hours.[5]

Plot[edit]

Pathfinder: Kingmaker is based on the six modules that make up the Pathfinder Adventure Path campaign published in 2010.[6] It is set within the Stolen Lands, part of the greater region of the River Kingdoms south of Brevoy, which is in turn part of Golarion, the default setting of Pathfinder. It features the player carving their own realm out among the wilderness as a local lord, and expands upon the corresponding Kingmaker tabletop module.[7][8]

The story begins with the main character and other adventurers being offered by local lords the chance to become the rulers of their own barony, provided they are able to defeat the bandits that are now controlling that area of the country. This not only sets the stage for the realm management portion of the game, but also embroils the character in a world of political intrigue and adventure.[9][10]

Development[edit]

Following the game's announcement, Owlcat announced they were considering different funding avenues. This culminated in the June 2017 launch of the Kickstarter campaign, which was billed as for expanding the game rather than funding it. The campaign ended by the end of the month after raising US$909,057 from more than 18,000 contributors.[2][3][4][11]

Chris Avellone, an acclaimed scriptwriter for other role-playing games, contributed to the game.[1][12] The game was published by Deep Silver and was released on 25 September 2018.[13]

Reception[edit]

Reception
Aggregate score
AggregatorScore
Metacritic73/100[14]

Pathfinder: Kingmaker received generally positive reviews, holding an aggregate metascore of 73 out of 100 on Metacritic. The Game Debate review praised the game's engrossing story, depth and realm management feature, calling it "a beautiful looking, rich CRPG, that delivers a great place to adventure, an interesting land to rule and the tools to carve out a realm that you can call home".[15] In a somewhat less enthusiastic review, GameSpot's Daniel Starkey believes the game to be "hampered by a litany of small issues, balancing, and the gargantuan knowledge base you'll need to play most effectively", while also lauding the narrative and the kingdom management aspect of the game, mentioning that "for those with the patience, the rewards are well worth the investment".[10] The game has also been criticized for its inconsistent difficulty curve and the opaqueness of some of its mechanics.[16]

On the technical side, the game's launch was plagued by numerous bugs, long loading screens and balance issues, which hurt the game's initial reception with both professional critics and customers.[17] In the following months, many of these issues have been fixed by patches.[18]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d "Pathfinder: Kingmaker: the first CRPG in Pathfinder universe". Owlcat Games. My.com. Retrieved 26 August 2017.
  2. ^ a b c Wilson, Jason (31 May 2017). "Pathfinder: Kingmaker launches $500,000 Kickstarter for extra content, not the base game (update)". GamesBeat. VentureBeat. Retrieved 26 August 2017.
  3. ^ a b "Pathfinder: Kingmaker by Owlcat Games". Kickstarter. Kickstarter. 7 June 2017. Retrieved 26 August 2017.
  4. ^ a b Kaiser, Rowan (9 June 2017). "Pathfinder: Kingmaker could scratch your D&D RPG itch". IGN. Retrieved 26 August 2017.
  5. ^ Khan, Imran (28 August 2018). "Pathfinder: Kingmaker: Of Kings And Countries". Game Informer. Retrieved 27 January 2019.
  6. ^ Avellone, Chris (20 June 2017). "Update 12: Chris Avellone: Growing a Story -Pathfinder: Kingmaker". Kickstarter. Retrieved 27 January 2019.
  7. ^ Hall, Charlie (26 June 2017). "Pathfinder will finally get its own isometric RPG thanks to successful Kickstarter". Polygon. Vox Media. Retrieved 26 August 2017.
  8. ^ Fillari, Alessandro (6 June 2017). "Pathfinder: Kingmaker Kickstarter Rides The Wave Of Nostalgia And The CRPG Renaissance". Gamespot. Retrieved 26 August 2017.
  9. ^ Schmeyer, D. M. (17 October 2018). "Pathfinder: Kingmaker Review". IGN. Retrieved 27 January 2019.
  10. ^ a b Starkey, Daniel (8 October 2018). "Pathfinder: Kingmaker Review - The Classics". GameSpot. Retrieved 27 January 2019.
  11. ^ Cosimano, Mike (2 July 2017). "Pathfinder: Kingmaker is a surprisingly faithful adaptation of tabletop RPGs". Destructoid. Enthusiast Gaming. Retrieved 26 August 2017.
  12. ^ O'Connor, Alice (17 May 2017). "Pathfinder: Kingmaker bringing tabletop RPG to PC". Rock, Paper, Shotgun. Retrieved 26 August 2017.
  13. ^ Tarason, Dominic (20 July 2018). "Baldur's Gate-ish pen & paper adaptation Pathfinder: Kingmaker due September 25th". Rock, Paper, Shotgun. Retrieved 22 July 2018.
  14. ^ "Pathfinder: Kingmaker for PC Reviews". Metacritic. CBS Interactive. Retrieved 25 November 2018.
  15. ^ Nova, Felix (8 December 2018). "Pathfinder: Kingmaker Review". www.game-debate.com. Retrieved 27 January 2019.
  16. ^ Garcia Jr., René S. (16 October 2019). "Review: Pathfinder: Kingmaker Is a Beautiful, Unstable Game". GameCrate. Retrieved 27 January 2019.
  17. ^ Vitale, Bryan (8 October 2018). "Pathfinder: Kingmaker Review". RPGSite. Retrieved 27 January 2019.
  18. ^ Vitale, Bryan (29 October 2018). "One month and One Dozen Hotfixes After Release, Pathfinder: Kingmaker is Revving Up for a Major 1.1 Update". RPGSite. Retrieved 27 January 2019.

External links[edit]