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There is a world of adventure waiting for you to explore. It’s a world that needs brave and powerful heroes. Countless others have come before, but their time is over. Now it’s your turn.
Pathfinder Core Rulebook
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Pathfinder: Kingmaker is an isometric Role-Playing Game developed by Owlcat Games (a company based in the Russian Federation and founded & led by veterans of Nival Interactive, specifically the ones responsible for Heroes of Might & Magic V, the early Allods games, and Silent Storm, among others), based on the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game's "Kingmaker" Adventure Path. The game includes writing by Chris Avellone, and was released on September 25th, 2018.

The game is modeled quite heavily onthe tabletop experience and in the style of classics such as Baldur's Gate, with combat using Real-Time with Pause. Due to the story focusing on a local lord, the game places emphasis on realm-building, with player decisions affecting several aspects of the gameplay. The game focuses on the player building their own realm in the wilderness, then expanding upon like the corresponding module.

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A DLC titled Varnhold's Lot was released February 28, 2019, in which the Player Character is Maegar Varn's general and has to deal with the various problems the new barony is facing. The story runs parallel to and can be imported into the main campaign.

A sequel, Pathfinder: Wrath of the Righteous, was announced in December 2019, based on the Adventure Path of the same name. A Kickstarter campaign for the game launched in February 2020, and conluded on March 11th of that year, having raised $2.05 million US dollars (more than double what the Kingmaker KS did).


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Pathfinder Kingmaker contains examples of:

  • Absurdly Sharp Blade: A Vorpal Sword, both necessary for the genre, and thematically appropriate considering what particular creatures you end up facing. Snicker-Snack.
  • Action Girl: You get four female party members in the base game, more in the Wildcards DLC; two in fact. All of whom are exceptionally skilled at fighting and murder in their own ways, and your player character can be female as well.
  • Adam Smith Hates Your Guts: Played for Laughs with a lone Goblin merchant, whose wares are all inflated, but particular note is a "Masterwork" Club that he's offering to you for 123,457 gold - for comparison's sake, most Masterwork weaponry costs 400.
    • Also, anything you want to sell will always net you 25% of how much you would pay to buy it, even when buying back something you sold. On the bright side, market saturation isn't even a thing: you can pawn off the thousands of regular weapons and armor and low-tier magic gear you will be looting from the scores of mooks you kill and nobody will object.
  • Adaptational Badass: The original Adventure Path was balanced for four player characters (controlled by individual players) and not as a CRPG with six controllable characters. Most of its enemies (especially the Arc Villains) have drastically increased power as a result.
  • Adaptation Expansion: The original Adventure Path was somewhat notorious for not even hinting at Nyrissa's existence until near the end (at least in the player-facing narrative; the GM was made aware of her existence in the very first book but was given very little, if anything, for her to do and no detailed description of her character) and having something of a Random Events Plot. The game integrates her into things right from the beginning... but in the process removes or alters a number of characters who originally had completely independent motives.
  • Adorable Evil Minions: Not only are there a fair amount of Kobolds, Goblins, and Mites around (and you can make friends with as many of them as you wish, though your citizens might not appreciate it), but you get to recruit an adorable evil goblin minion of your own (regardless of your own personal alignment as the player character).
  • Adult Fear: Lake Silverstep Village has Ivar, whose children died from falling off a cliff after he'd told them a fanciful tale about how they could see a Silver Dragon from it during a new moon.
  • Alchemy Is Magic: The alchemist is one of several classes you can choose from when starting the game or when leveling up your character. It focuses on infusing chemical reagents with magical energy, creating potions, poisons, mutagens, and incendiaries. Its ultimate (20th-level) ability is the "grand discovery", which can take numerous forms, including immortality or the creation of a philosopher's stone. Alchemists also take on a Jekyll & Hyde vibe by using transformative mutagens to power up.
  • Alternative Calendar: The game uses the standard Golarion (the planet where the game takes place) calendar. Said calendar is just like our own, only with the names of the months changed (they are called after the main gods of the setting).
  • Androcles' Lion: Zzamas, a non-aggressive Primal Spider you find in the Varnhold area. If you save him not only he gives you a small cache of treasure, but also joins one of the battles in the final chapter fighting by your side.
  • Antagonist Title: Possibly, depending on who the title refers to. A "kingmaker" is someone who makes others into kings or, less literally, into authority figures in general often with the implication that the kingmaker is the one wielding the real power. As such the PC, who takes open power themselves, doesn't qualify. Nyrissa on the other hand...
  • Anti-Frustration Features: An unlimited (in size) shared party stash only capped by the amount of total weight that the party can carry.
    • A lot of skills have been consolidated or removed to ensure that new players won't wind up taking skills that have no purpose in gameplay.
    • When camping or resting, any party member with healing abilities will expend them before regaining their daily uses, saving you from having to heal your party manually.
    • When you attempt a skill check with your entire party selected, the most skilled character will be the one attempting it without need to select them individually.
    • The Bonus Boss mentioned below requires that you kill 45 mini-bosses throughout the Stolen Lands - thankfully, this is retroactive.
    • Cleric storekeepers sell scrolls of atonement, which allow you to quickly reset your Character Alignment invoked to where it was at character creation, just in case you manage to alignment-drift to the point of losing access to class features.
  • Arbitrary Headcount Limit: You're limited to six characters in your party at once. Thanks to Leaked Experience, even those you don't take with you on every adventure stay viable (though this can be turned off for a more Baldur's Gate-like experience).
  • Armor and Magic Don't Mix: Like the tabletop game, using armor and trying to cast arcane spells (without the specific ability to do so) incurs a percentile chance of having the spell fizzle. Bards can cast in light armor, while magi begin able to cast in light armor and later gain the ability to cast in medium and heavy armor. Divine magic is not restricted in this way.
  • Ascended Extra: Maegar Varn and Varnhold are referenced only a little in the Adventure Path, serving mostly as a friendly neighbor and the launching point for Chapter 3's main conflict. In the game, not only is it possible to rescue Maegar Varn and have him join your kingdom, impossible in the adventure path, but there's an entire DLC related to playing Varnhold's story.
  • Baleful Polymorph:
    • invoked The Trope Namer is implemented as a 5th level spell on the druid, sorcerer, wizard, and magus lists.
    • In one of Jubilost's companion quests, another gnome casts a spell on the rules for a contest run by fey, turning anybody who reads it into a frog. The gnome's own siblings both got hit by it by accident, and Jubilost potentially can, too.
  • Being Good Sucks: Striving to always make the Good, or at least least-Evil, decisions will result in you missing out on three extremely powerful artisan masterpieces while gaining you nothing. Additionally, while both Good and Evil barons get buildings that help them resolve problems, the Evil one is both much better and much cheaper. Good guys can be a Paladin, but the mandatory Lawful Good alignment is notoriously slippery to hold onto as the game goes on.
  • Bittersweet Ending: The organic nature of the ending means you may get some sections of this depending on how you resolved certain quests or events, for instance:
    • Convincing Jubilost to accept the gift of immortality from Shyka the Many will make him so enamored with the First World that he starts neglecting and eventually abandons all of his business in the Material Plane, until he leaves for an expedition he never returns from
  • Blade on a Stick: Spears, Scythes, Glaives, Etc.
  • Bonus Boss: In the Valley of the Dead there is a room Tristian strongly advises you not to enter. If you do enter it, you'll face an Astradaemon and two Thanadaemon.
    • Blakemoor the Wizard's Arch-Enemy Siroket will show up if you help him and attack both of you. She carries one of the game's best weapons and she knows how to use it.
    • Kill 45 or more minibosses from all around the Stolen Lands and find the key inside the old well (once your capital advances to the rank of City) and you will be able to challenge Farnirras the Pensive, a lich with some of the strongest spells in the game. In his treasure stash are some godly-tier weapons and accessories.
  • Bottomless Magazines: Your bow and crossbow users don't need to keep track of arrows, though magic quivers which give an unlimited supply of enchanted arrows are able to be found.
  • Brick Joke: In the very first journal entry, Linzi writes: "Linzi the...note to self: when I come up with a fancy nickname, add it here". In the last page of the epilogue book, she refers to herself as "Linzi-who-never-picked-a-fancy-nickname".
  • Broken Bridge: Each chapter has a border you can't cross until you solve its issue:
  • The Cameo: Besides Amiri and Linxia, Kyra makes a minor appearance in the icon for the Angelic Aspect spell.
  • Character Class System: Being based on D&D, it has the classics: Bard, Barbarian, Cleric, Druid, Fighter, Monk, Paladin, Ranger, Rogue, Sorcerer, Wizard. It also has some prestige classes and classes from other sources (Alchemist, Inquisitor and Magus).
    • The "Wildcards" DLC introduced the Kineticist.
  • Character Shilling: Subtly done, but when the Defaced Sister in the Kellid camp explains what she is, Tristian (if he's there) chimes in to say how honorable their sacrifice makes them in an admiring tone, even though everyone else in the camp hates her. They've both been coerced to work for Nyrissa.
    • Alternatively, he was probably being sarcastic. This is evidenced by the Sister reacting in a rather angry tone when he says his line and the fact that he knows very well what "higher power" she is working for and that it's far from benevolent.
  • Chekhov's Gun: Several.
    • Tartuccio gives you a Pitaxian signet ring at the beginning of the prologue, then at the end of the prologue tries to use your possession of it to frame you as a Pitaxian spy and the cause of the massacre. If you bring that ring to the Rushlight Tournament you'll get a special dialogue option at the conclusion that bypasses several Diplomacy checks and lets you embarrass Irovetti in front of the whole tournament by revealing him as the one responsible.
    • If you keep the charm the Guardian of the Bloom gives you at Oleg's Trading Post at the beginning of the game and carry it around with you, you can skip having to do a kingdom project during War of the River Kings. Linzi will comment on its presence or absence.
    • For one in Nyrissa's story rather than the player's, if you give the First Crown to Shyka the Many during War of the River Kings Shyka can exploit the fact Nyrissa trapped the king's soul inside it instead of killing him to screw her over at a critical moment, killing her without a fight during the finale of the game. Shyka will admit this is exactly why they want it if you ask.
  • Collection Sidequest: You can find oddities like ancient weapons and exotic coins lying about pretty much everywhere, which the Storyteller in your throne room will buy from you. Some are part of a set that will reward you with a bit of lore, a good chunk of gold and experience and sometimes an artifact if you manage to get them all.
  • Could Say It, But...: Exploited by one of the Defaced Sisters if you choose a Good-only dialogue option. Since she's forced to obey the person she's working for she can't tell you their plans, so she instead denies those plans in a way that makes the truth extremely obvious, then encourages you to do something in such a ham-handed way that it's clear you should absolutely not do it.
    Defaced Sister: "The power that sent us wishes... you... g-g-good too... D-don't worry about my S-Sisters. All they tell you is truth, and they are n-not plotting to kill you."
  • Curb-Stomp Battle: Many Chaotic Evil choices let you attack enemies unprovoked, some of which may be simple commoners who will go down before they can even draw a weapon.
    • Tristian can be at the receiving end of this if you choose to take the Oculus of Abaddon from him by force. A single unarmored cleric is hardly a match for your party after you have crushed two Stone Golems and a Defaced Sister to get to him. If you gained control of the Iron Golem in the nearby room, you can even let the construct curb stomp him itself.
  • Cursed with Awesome: The sorcerer Class has Bloodlines which can stem from anything from dragons to demons to undead and more. They all give the Sorcerer awesome powers, new spells, and access to more feats.
    • Later in the game the Player Character can get cursed by Lamashtu. However, since she's a Goddess of Monstrosity and Horrors, the curses you can get are fairly benign, or even beneficial.
  • Defeat Means Friendship: A number of bosses can be befriended (provided you have the correct alignment), but the one that portrays this trope most solidly is Armag, the barbarian warlord, who will declare you blood-siblings if you spare him.
  • Demoted to Extra: Baron Hannis Drelev of Glenebon serves two roles in the Adventure Path - He's a baron who serves as Irovetti's catspaw and he's a traitor who serves as the secondary antagonist of Chapter 4. In the game he plays neither of these roles, with new characters Tartuccio taking the role of the catspaw baron-wannabe and Tristian taking the role of the traitorous secondary antagonist of Chapter 4. As for Drelev, it's possible to go through the entire game without knowing who he is.
  • Developers' Foresight: Not based on reactivity to the plot, but in addition to having multiple recordings of companions' various quotes for acknowledging player orders, spotting hidden objects, unlocking doors, and disarming traps, characters also have another set of those quotes which has them whispering while they're in stealth.
  • The Dog Was the Mastermind: The Reveal that the Lantern King himself posed intermittently as a mad prophet that you meet en route to the Stolen Lands, a helpful gnome stuck in the First World, and one of Nyrissa's own servants, all because he wanted front-row seats for the fun.
  • Duel Boss: Fredero for Valerie, Armag for Amiri. Nok-Nok versus the Goblin Chief can be one as well, though played through cutscenes and skill checks.
  • Dude, Where's My Respect?: No matter how high your position is, You're still asked to go out and fix the problems of your country by hand, though you can dictate some issues to your advisers to deal with instead.
    • Averted with crafters: Allowing them to set up shop in your kingdom and dealing with the occasional hitch in their plans will make them pay you regular tribute in the form of magic weapons and items (and eventually a unique and otherwise unobtainable masterpiece).
  • Dwindling Party:
    • Possibly inverted in The Very Definitely Final Dungeon: Nyrissa splits the party and kills off your companions one by one, but if you resolved their personal quests favorably, they can survive and rejoin you.
    • In Lostlarn Keep, Varn is parted from the others early on, sent back to Varnhold through a portal. Cephal is left on the other side of a cave-in after protecting the rest of the party from falling rocks. And finally, at the very end of the dungeon, the Horned Hunter unceremoniously kills off the remaining party members other than the General.
  • Early Game Hell: In the early game enemies tend to not only outnumber you, but even the basic mooks have absurd amounts of hitpoints compared to a PC of the same level while doing just as much weapon damage. They also tend to have mages in their party that cast fear effects all over the place, letting them pick off your weaker party members while the tanks are running around; meanwhile, a good PC who isn't a caster themselves will have no magic support outside a low level bard.
    • And once you take charge of your barony you're expected to deal with several monthly problems with only four advisors. A couple Failures or Disasters on events may dip your kingdom stats below zero, which will start undermining your kingdom's stability.
    • Making a character with low hit points, especially a less combat-focused one, amplifies this as the tutorial can become absurdly hard. Your two first party additions are a fragile bard and an even more fragile sorcerer and you're fighting groups of rogues who can drop anyone in the party with a single critical hit or sneak attack, turning the tutorial combat into a game of Rocket Tag. The first character you get with any kind of resilience is the fourth one (who is undead and therefore immune to sneaks and crits) and you get your off-tank/healer and main tank fifth and sixth/last, respectively.
  • Epic Fail:
    • Random luck and a low advisor's ability can make it so that solving a problem actually makes it worse than if you'd left it alone.
    • Rolling too low when disarming a trap will set it off in the disarmer's face.
    • This goes for the enemy as well. It's possible for an enemy to roll so badly they fall to your Instant Death spells.
    • Early-game spellcasters aren't especially concerned with friendly fire, which can lead to cases of bandit mages disabling their own front line with Color Spray while you're unaffected. And in the fight with Tartuk at Old Sycamore, he uses a lot of Fireball spells, which not only have a tendency to blow up his own mooks, but even potentially Tartuk himself (especially if you Charge him to get to melee range).
  • Evil vs. Evil:
    • You can be any alignment on the grid, including Evil, but that doesn't mean that your enemies and your kingdom's enemies (even the evil ones) are going to give you a pass.
    • This is the core of Enneo's crusade against followers of Urgathoa: he doesn't hesitate to murder innocents or set them up to die for his hunt. It says something when siding with the undead is the Neutral Good option.
  • Familiar: There are somewhere around 10 different options for Familiars in the base game. This mostly helps out Wizards, but some other classes and archetypes can get one too.
  • Fantasy Pantheon: Lots of gods (over 20) from Golarion.
  • The Fair Folk: A major theme in the game. There are lots of issues that come up between your citizens and the fey that you have to solve, not all of them violently.
  • Fake Difficulty: A problem initially before patches fixed things. Still pops up in some places.
    • In a game that is otherwise fairly free-form with combat and allows for a great deal of tactical maneuvering, several fights will force your entire party to a set position for a cutscene robbing you of your ability to position. Additionally, these short ingame cutscenes cannot be skipped and spell timers continue to run during them. Most notable is the fight with Irovetti since this repositioning happens in the middle of the fight and pulls you into a dangerous aura he likely cast in the first part, only to have a fairly lengthy scene during which most of your short-term spells will expire.
    • How you're supposed to fight swarms was initially only seen in a loading-screen tip, making the ones in the Fangberry Cave a huge Guide Dang It! that required you to buy or hoard specific items you otherwise had little use for. Now that information is both given to you by the person who tells you to go there (along with some anti-swarm weapons) and pops up right before you see your first swarm, and the Cave was expanded so you don't need to fight the swarm to finish the quest but instead get some nice loot if you do.
    • Previously, getting certain random encounters early on (the werewolf was especially infamous) could kill your entire party through no fault of your own. It was also possible to get random combat encounters two or three times your party level. These have been toned down repeatedly in patches.
    • The various difficulty adjustments used to interact strangely with one another and could produce enemies that were nearly impossible. This was clarified and shifted around a bit to make it more apparent what affects what.
  • Fantasy Gun Control: The game does not include firearms or firearm rules despite the Pathfinder RPG system including a Gunslinger class. Made even more jarring by the fact you interact with the country of Numeria (who is your north-western neighbor) and Technic League agents, which in the original setting often use high-tech guns as their weapon of choice. (Similarly, none of the rules for refurbishing hi-tech weapons are in the game, and you cannot play as a Technomancer.)
  • Fatal Flaw: Pride is the defining flaw of over a dozen major characters ranging from significant NPCs to several companions to every noteworthy antagonist from the tutorial villain to the Greater-Scope Villain. Most of the game is spent observing, managing, and dishing out the consequences of misplaced pride.
  • Fisher King: Your barony-turned-kingdom will take on your alignment at the time of its foundation, and the type of NPCs roaming around your capital and their idle banter will reflect it. For instance, a Lawful kingdom will have Hellknights standing watch in the streets and merchants trying to solve customs issues with the guards, while a Good kingdom will have citizens do some random acts of kindness to one another.
  • Flaming Sword: A common Enchantment. The paladin and magus classes also both have the ability to give their weapons this ability as well.
  • Foreshadowing: Happens a lot, sometimes in obvious ways, other times in subtle ones.
    • The Stag Lord unknowingly but clearly outlines Nyrissa's entire modus operandi when he dies, making it obvious she's doing the same thing to you. And Irovetti.
    • Jubilost takes a lot of verbal pot-shots at Willas Gunderson when he shows up, mostly in regards to his overestimating himself, and the quest he gives show he's far too quick to jump to conclusions and doesn't put a lot of thought into things. Both foreshadow his role in the destruction of Varnhold.
    • Camp dialogue may have Tristian note that Linzi is so focused on her book it feels like she's trying to put a piece of herself into it. Linzi winds up having a lot more than piece of herself in that book after the House at the End of Time.
    • The Defaced Sister you meet in the Kellid camp during Chapter 4 has a unique positive interaction with Tristian since they both have the same mission.
    • And then there's the curses. Even as early as Chapter 2, potentially, it's clear something is going on in the Stolen Lands, even beyond what your companions and court initially discuss:
      • When you meet Ivar, you can hear his entire story. Riven with guilt over "killing" his family with a well-intentioned story that led to tragedy, he "cursed" himself at their graves, screaming he was a monster... and this turned him into a werewolf. Anyone familiar with Pathfinder will immediately sit up, because this is not how lycanthropy works in-setting at all. No matter how great your guilt, you can't just get really sad and angry and turn into a werebeast; it takes a very powerful curse spell, almost on par with a Wish or Miracle, to forcibly lycanthropize someone outside of them having the curse spread to them via bites or whatnot. This is an immediate red flag that something powerful is at work in the Stolen Lands.
      • On a similar tack, the whole story of the Scythe Tree deep in the Narlmarches. It used to be a dryad queen, who was transformed into a Scythe Tree via what appears to be a local curse superstition wherein you place a curse on someone by throwing a coin in a well. This same curse has forced multiple individuals into undeath, as well. Even another local NPC in-universe will point out that, by most magicians' experiences, this is total nonsense; that's not even how proper curses work in-universe, the creation of undead of that power isn't even usually the domain of curses regardless, and in particular permanently turning a dryad queen into a damned scythe tree, against her will, is pretty much the exclusive domain of the most powerful 9th-level or Mythic magic. Although she doesn't speculate further, the NPC herself points out that something a hell of a lot more powerful than some wisps in a well have to be at work to make something like that happen the way it did.
  • The Friend Nobody Likes: The Lantern King is this to the rest of the Eldest due to his destructive sense of humor and Disproportionate Retribution. Magdh, Shyka, and The Lost Prince have no problems helping the player deal with him in the Golden Ending.
  • Fungus Humongous: The Shambling Mound is basically this. There's an absolutely horrifying encounter with one where you can read the notes detailing its creation. Who knew that the process of creating a giant humanoid fungus monster was so unsettling?
  • Gameplay and Story Integration:
    • "Book events" let you choose different kinds of action that will succeed or fail depending on your (and your companion's) abilities and skills. Similarly, some options are only available if you're a corresponding alignment - they'll be invisible and grayed-out, otherwise.
    • Some enemies are labeled more vaguely until they reveal their abilities. For instance, a Bandit Alchemist will be simply named "Bandit" until they throw a bomb or use an extract.
  • Gold–Silver–Copper Standard: Averted like on most infinity engine games.
  • Guide Dang It!:
    • Some mechanics aren't very well-explained, such as establishing your first settlement - once you've claimed a new region, you have to build one by selecting a marker in the region on the map screen.
    • In a general sense, all of the relics you can collect and craft into gear or get a story (and XP) from. Finding them without a guide can be an exercise in frustration, especially if you have only one more left to find but can't remember which ones you've already obtained.
    • The same thing goes for the key to unlock the Bonus Boss. It requires that you defeat 45 specific monsters - but once you get down to the final few, trying to figure out which ones are left is an exercise in frustration.
    • The "Lost Child" quest has a few possible outcomes, but to get the "best" one you have to know exactly what you're dealing with, and have exactly the right spell prepared, and pass a DC 20 Knowledge (Arcana) check to get the dialogue option to use the spell to appear. A more obvious option that sounds like it will lead to the best ending only will if you've talked to the named lizards in the village and picked all the good dialogue options; otherwise going through with it actually results in the child dying. The reason is that the NPC you ask for help dispels the invisibility on a Will-o'-the-Wisp, which immediately attacks with lightning; the previously-mentioned "exact spell" is Glitterdust which will both reveal and stun the wisp, preventing it from doing that, and talking to the villagers calms their fears, which are what give the creature strength.
    • The final romance option available is Nyrissa herself, but accessing it is so convoluted that entire guides have been written to help. Particularly frustrating is that getting the Golden Ending on this path requires dialogue options with bosses - Tartuk, Vordakai, and Armag. Tartuk and Armag (whose dialogues are interchangeable) can die without you being able to talk to them, and the check for Vordakai? It requires an Arcane Knowledge check of 21 or higher to even access it, is absolutely required, and it's completely hidden! Compounding this Vordakai likes to use death spells on your weaker party members, like the ones most likely to have that skill, and if they're not alive at the end of the fight (you don't get time to heal them before the conversation comes up) you can't use their bonuses.
    • In Jaethal's final quest, you can convince her to spare her daughter, but it requires making several choices before. In her first quest, tell Jaethal to kill the girl she has turned undead. In the next quest, learn Tanaka's secret and protect Jaethal. Finally, when you face Jaethal's daughter, protect Jaethal and then, in the aftermath, remind Jaethal about her pride in her daughter. After making two choices, Jaethal will tell Urgathoa she must disappoint her - which leads to Urgathoa killing her. This, however, allows you to later meet Jaethal in the House at the End of Time as a friendly NPC.
    • A handful of sidequests give directions which boil down to little more than "meet some guy in the woods". Sometimes the player is meant to revisit a zone, sometimes the quest will advance as a "random" encounter while traveling, and occasionally a hidden node will spawn when the party walks past on the world map. Good luck figuring out which is the correct option without a guide.
    • It is possible to end up without a Councilor for Kingdom Management, which often spells inevitable doom due to the position being needed to resolve numerous events. Specifically, of the three potential candidates, Shandra must be selected at the very start of the game, without any indication what function she could actually serve (and the player's Swordlord benefactor advising them to avoid her), Tsanna is a Chaotic Evil priestess who is likely to die at the player's hands long before there's any indication she's recruit-able, and Tristan betrays the party and may be fought and killed as a result.
    • Saving Nilak during "The Twice-Born Warlord". When "Hour of Rage" becomes available, you must go there before doing "The Betrayer's Flight". Then, when the time comes for Amiri to infiltrate the camp, she must use an alternate path to reach the center of the camp so she doesn't engage in combat with anyone except Armag himself. A Chaotic player can instead make the Tiger Lords throw a riot, bypassing the stealth mission aspect. Oh, and to top it off, doing this permanently ends Tristian's Romance Sidequest: you have to do "Betrayer's Flight" first to continue it.
  • Harder Than Hard: The aptly named "Unfair mode" which double the damage dealt by monsters and traps. Enemies will also have increased power and deliver critical hits more often.
  • Heel Realization:
    • In the first chapter the main character can hand a few of these out to some of the named bandits working for the Stag Lord. Kressle can have one if the player is Good-aligned and talks her down and Akiros can have one as well if the player sneaks up on him with a Mobility check then passes a Knowledge check to guilt-trip him by pointing out which faith he used to follow.
    • A Good-aligned character can invoke one during the third chapter, when confronting one of the Defaced Sisters, pointing out just how many had died while she remains cryptic. She's more forthcoming with information after that, and abandons her sisters rather than head back to the barbarian camp to rejoin them, dropping a hint or two about their true intentions in the process.
  • Hero of Another Story: You're not the only big shot in the Stolen Lands, nor the only one with a tale to tell.
    • Jamandi Aldori, especially if you support Restov against Brevoy or turn in the Restovic set to the Storyteller.
    • Maegar Varn, whose story you can play through in the Varnhold's Lot DLC.
    • Darven, the Designated Hero of the Deal with the Devil kingdom quest.
    • Blakemoor the Wizard, an NPC you can meet in the vicinity of Pitax.
  • Hobbits: Lawyer-friendly "Halflings", as in Dungeons & Dragons.
  • Idiosyncratic Difficulty Levels: There are two difficulty settings in the game.
    • Gameplay difficulty.
      • Story mode.
      • Easy mode.
      • Normal mode.
      • Challenging mode.
      • Hard mode.
      • Unfair mode.
    • Kingdom Management. You can also set it to Auto, but you wont be able to disable it once the game starts and you'll be at the mercy of the RNG.
      • Effortless
      • Easy
      • Normal
      • Hard
  • Improbable Power Discrepancy: A lot of the enemies you encounter, especially later in the game, have been drastically increased in power from their tabletop equivalents in order to provide a better challenge. An example of this is the 'Mature Leopard' you encounter in a random encounter in the early game, which is a 10 HD animal as opposed to the 3 HD leopards have in the tabletop.
  • In the End, You Are on Your Own: You get torn apart from your companions as you enter the final dungeon. And if you didn't complete their personal quests, it will stay that way.
  • Inherently Funny Words: In Jubilost's quest to the Inconsequent Debates, another gnome there enchanted the posted rules as a prank. The center sign forces anybody who reads it, including a crusader contestant and potentially Jubilost, to say "tentacles" every few words.
  • Interface Screw: If your main character gets Dominated, you will see enemies outlined as allies and vice versa.
  • I Know Your True Name: Can bite you in the ass in the Valley of the Dead. Every time you reveal your or one of your companion's names within earshot of Horagnamon (who constantly attempts to taunt you into doing so) a Soul Eater, which must be fought alone by that character, is summoned right before the confrontation with Vordakai. Unfortunately, your companions grab the Idiot Ball Horagnamon tosses them and reveal their own names if you don't.
  • Kaizo Trap: When exiting the Verdant Chambers after defeating the last Sister and rescuing Tristian, there is one last trap right in front of the exit which if not evaded or disarmed will wallop your entire party with Energy Drain, potentially killing a few members instantly. Ouch.
  • Kleptomaniac Hero: Barring the occasional Teleporting Keycard Squad or guard made to protect one specific stash, nobody will bat an eye at your characters freely invading private property and taking everything not nailed down, including your own citizens.
  • Knight Templar: Hegend, a paladin of Shelyn who appears during Valerie's companion quest. If Shelyn forgives Valerie and removes her scar, Hegend completely loses it and orders his fellow paladins to kill Valerie in the middle of the temple. Not only do he and his followers die fighting your party and the other Shelyn worshippers, but the bloodshed desecrates the temple rendering it unusable. Subverted with Fredero Sinnet, the other paladin of Shelyn who appears in the quest chain, as he turns out to be more reasonable and will attack Hegend when he goes nuts if Shelyn forgives Valerie.
  • Land of Faerie: The First World, as in the tabletop game, is full of The Fair Folk, who have Blue-and-Orange Morality due to their immortality. If the player rescues Evindra when dealing with Pitax, they can learn that the veil between the First World and the Stolen Lands is surprisingly thin, to the point that any Fair Folk that die there will simply go back to the First World instead of dying for real. Thus, many mythical creatures are drawn there out of curiosity, explaining a lot about why so many are present in the King/Queendom.
  • Laughably Evil: Per the setting, the smaller Evil monsters, mainly mites, kobolds, and goblins, are generally Played for Laughs: tribes of small, idiosyncratic critters that talk in You No Take Candle and think they're a lot tougher than they actually are.
    • There's a war between tribes of kobolds and mites in the first chapter in which you can intervene. The kobolds in particular are dupes of the Starter Villain Tartuccio, and if you treat them with mercy you gain the ability to construct a special "Kobold Quarter" building in any Town or City you own, which offers some nice boosts to your barony's Espionage stat.
    • There's an entire subplot in the "Season of Bloom" chapter involving the local goblin tribes. They think the plague of magical parasites turning humanoids into monsters is a sign from Lamashtu and keep trying to domesticate the monsters—usually getting eaten for their troubles. One of them, Nok-Nok, can actually join your party and be a pretty effective Rogue, and you can get an achievement for partying with a tribe in a storybook event. At the same time, they are kidnapping villagers and trying to force-feed the monster seeds to them, and unlike with the kobolds they got the idea in their heads all on their own.
  • Lawful Stupid: The game's portrayal of the invoked Lawful Good alignment has a few issues at times. In particular, the Nazrielle-Sartayne sidequest regards arresting Sartayne for sabotaging Nazrielle's magical weapons to ruin her reputation, in order to get revenge on her for ruining his father's as a Lawful Evil action for some reason, even though a lot of innocent people were endangered by this. You'll also find yourself commonly taking Neutral Good or Chaotic Good actions for lack of a Lawful Good counterpart.
  • Lightning Bruiser: Barbarians have a bonus to their speed and are one of the hardest hitters in the game.
  • Linear Warriors, Quadratic Wizards: Historically enforced by D&D and the games based on its mechanics.
  • Limited-Use Magical Device: Scrolls, Potions and Wands.
  • Loyal Animal Companion: A class feature for Rangers, Druids and certain clerics and sorcerers (including the companion Ekun). They are good for tanking.
  • Ludicrous Gibs: Big hits cause enemies to explode. Useful in the case of trolls, since they need to be either damaged by fire or acid or be gibbed like this to stay dead. Counterproductive with many magical and non-magical beasts, which can be skinned for their valuable pelts if they aren't gibbed.
  • Marathon Level: Vordakai's Tomb features two entire floors with death traps, encounters with groups of undead cyclops, undead that can damage or permanently drain your ability scores and levels, hordes of ''dozens'' of zombies at a time, a fight with Soul Eaters that you and up to two party members will have to fight one-on-one, and tops it off with a boss that, at the very least, is mercifully straightforward. Oh, and the exit seals itself after the first encounter, so you have to complete it all in one go. It also got infamous as That One Level, so much that a patch added a few camping supplies just outside the boss room so the players wouldn't be forced to fight him completely drained of all their resources.
  • Medieval Stasis: Played straight.
  • Mood Whiplash: A bundle of notes in an abandoned cabin in Lake Silverstep Village starts out very heartwarming, describing how Ivar had wooed his wife, Lissa, and entertained their children with his penchant for tall tales. Unfortunately, it ends in tragedy because his children believed those tales, specifically one about climbing a hill on a moonless night, during which they slipped and fell to their deaths, with Lissa dying from grief not long after.
  • The Munchausen: Blakemoor the Wizard. He has a large array of impossible tales, but there are hints that he's not making any of them up. His First World tale is fantastical but not out of character for the Lantern King, and if Amiri is in the party she'll actually verify part of his tale about the North. You'll also get attacked by his Arch-Enemy Siroket if you help him, lending credence to his most recent tale.
  • My Country, Right or Wrong: Averted. If you put someone in charge as an advisor and keep acting contrary to their personal beliefs, they will eventually quit.
  • Nintendo Hard: Most of the negative reviews that aren't about bugs cite a mix of this and Early Game Hell as the game's biggest problem. It has little concept of fairness and pulls absolutely no punches. Even though Normal difficulty tilts things in the players' favor, the average Pathfinder veteran (to say nothing of people unfamiliar with the system) is going to die a lot and many people think this is what the original Kingmaker Adventure Path would look like if run by a Killer Game Master. Perhaps in anticipation of this, the game includes an extensively customizable level of difficulty to let people tone it down to something more reasonable.
  • Non-Lethal K.O.: Characters reduced to 0 hit points fall unconscious. They die when their hitpoints equal their Constitution score as a negative number, though on 'Normal' difficulty and below they will instead suffer a 'mortal wound' the first time and have to be killed again before they're down for good.
  • Noodle Incident: Early in Varnhold's Lot, Maegar and Cephal both refer to a past adventure hunting a witch named Noose.
  • Notice This: A chime and a quip will play when one of your characters find a hidden object. In the case of a trap the game will also autopause (by default) so you have time to stop before walking into it.
  • Obvious Beta: The game's initial release wasn't very smooth. It was littered with bugs and issues, with some of them preventing the completion of quests. A lot of the early encounters and random encounter tables were also unreasonably difficult to the point of a guaranteed party wipe (looking at you, random weretiger); a patch to relieve the most absurd parts of the Early Game Hell came in the first day.
  • Passive-Aggressive Kombat: The default behavior of just about every prominent figure from Pitax, especially at the Rushlight Tournament. They all hate each other and/or the Baron, but have to be polite for the sake of appearances. The Baron has a chance to engage in it with Irovetti at the end of the Tournament.
  • Peninsula of Power Leveling: The eastern bank of the Sellen river might give you random encounters against high-end monsters like Athachs and Bloody Bone Beasts. Not only they're worth a good chunk of experience but they might even have some magic items on them (like +4 Belts of Strength) you're not supposed to have access to until you actually have to cross the river.
  • Permanently Missable Content:
    • If you choose a (usually obvious) bad option in a character's personal quest it will often end the whole chain early. This means you can't use that party member in the Finale. In a twist on this, getting the 'best ending' for Jaethal's personal quest means you can't use her until the finale.
    • Previously, doing Betrayer's Flight before Hour of Rage automatically failed Amiri's personal quest but doing Hour of Rage before Betrayer's Flight ended Tristian's romance. This made it impossible to complete Amiri's personal quest if you were romancing Tristian. The fan dislike for this was so strong that the developers eventually changed it.
  • Player Headquarters: Fairly early on, you get your own barony (later Kingdom). It's the whole point of the adventure. You can assign important positions of power to your trusted companions, complete kingdom projects and deal with threats to your people.
  • Player Party: Your main character plus up to five other companions for a total of 6.
  • Plot Armor:
    • Some enemies which you are supposed to encounter multiple times will be impossible to attack as they will stay green (like friendly NPCs) and be immune even to area spells you may be throwing their way.
    • Linzi has a ring of plot armour that automatically saves her from death. This is because, as the one who's chronicling your story and writing down in your journal, she can't be permanently removed from your party.
  • Polyamory: Possible in two ways. In the base game, you can romance both Octavia and Regongar, thus joining their existing relationship. If you have the "Wild Cards" DLC, you can romance a pair of Tiefling twins who can't exist in Golarion at the same time.
  • Proxy War: Your barony in the Stolen Lands becomes essentially the Third World in a conflict between your patron, Lady Jamandi Aldori, and House Surtova, currently the rulers of Brevoy. Jamandi funds several adventurer expeditions, including yours, to develop the Stolen Lands in hopes of gaining an ally in Rostland's eventual bid for independence from Brevoy.
  • Ragtag Bunch of Misfits: If you recruit all available companions, your party will eventually include a peppy halfling chronicler, a rebellious ex-paladin, a scrappy barbarian, two freed Numerian slaves, a kind-hearted cleric, a grumpy and nihilistic dwarf, an arrogant genius gnome, a goblin who thinks of himself as the chosen of a monstrous goddess, and whatever personality you give to your main character.
  • Railroading: To some extent inevitable, but the 'Deal with the Devil' quest is on such obvious and aggravating tracks that it's widely complained about. To wits, any attempt you make to stop or kill Linxia before the quest's resolution results in her being simply aggravated and walking away, coming back to torment you later as if nothing happened.
  • Random Encounters: You are periodically ambushed on the road, or when resting.
  • Real-Time with Pause: After much consideration between this and Turn-based, it was decided the use Real Time with Pause. Like on the Infinity Engine games you have options to control the autopause (including to pause every 3 seconds, one "round" in-game to simulate a turn-based experience).
  • Replay Value: Aside from the multitude of possible class options and other choices that can be made with varying alignments, a lot of the plot elements uncovered later in the game are nicely foreshadowed early on.
  • Romance Sidequest: Four options - Valerie, Octavia, and Regongar for males, Tristian, Octavia, and Regongar for females. And a fifth, hidden option for both genders - namely, Nyrissa herself, though it crosses into Guide Dang It! territory. Of course, the Wildcards DLC adds even more Bi the Way Romance with a female Tiefling.
    • The Varnhold's Lot DLC has Maegar Varn for a female General and a one-night stand with Willas Gunderson for both.
  • Royals Who Actually Do Something: Your Main Character becomes first a Baron then a King (or Baroness and then Queen). This doesn't stop you from going out and murdering the entire population of bandits in your kingdom personally.
  • Sadistic Choice:
    • What will you choose: send the militia to protect your helpless citizens or secure the merchants' trade routes? The former are innocents civilians and contribute hard to your community. The latter are the backbone of your economy and it will collapse if you don't help them. Of course, you can always delegate someone else to make the decision.
    • Happens in the third part, where you have to choose to either assist Kesten in storming the Womb of Lamashtu and abandon the capital to be sieged by the monsters, or save the Capital but leave Kesten to die. Being Lawful allows you to Take a Third Option, ordering Kesten to protect the capital while you storm the Womb alone. A possible bit of Loophole Abuse involves saving one or the other but not talking to them prior to saving the other as well. Doing so will also spare both men.
    • Prior to this, dealing with the cult behind it has you decide whether or not Olika, the widow of a merchant whose body you'd found during Troll Trouble, should be allowed to receive Lamashtu's "blessing" to save the life of her unborn child, knowing full well what a blessing from the Mother of Monsters could entail. If you let her, the "Where Are They Now?" Epilogue states she was killed by an angry mob.
    • The end of Jaethal's companion quest line, especially for non-Evil players - either pull a Grand Theft Me on her daughter, or kill her and raise her up as an Undead. While she can Take a Third Option depending on prior choices, this option kills Jaethal, as she effectively tells Urgathoa to go pound salt - and Urgathoa responds with a Bolt of Divine Retribution that makes Jaethal Killed Off for Real.
  • Save Scumming: Highly encouraged by the community to the point it warrants a mention here. While a human Dungeon Master can choose to be merciful in the interests of keeping the game going and making sure the players have fun, the game cannot do this and thus relies entirely on the fickleness of the Random Number God. Most infamously, getting the Golden Ending requires passing a Knowledge Arcana skill check in a conversation you can only have once - If you fail to get this prompt you're locked out of that ending unless you do this, or the next level of editing the save file manually.
  • Schmuck Bait:
    • Early on, you can stumble across a camp at the Old Sycamore that is strewn with corpses, and checking it lets you see there are enough supplies to sleep there for one night. Doing so brings out Viscount Smoulderburn, a CR 14 enemy who liberally applies fear effects.
    • During Valerie's Romance Sidequest, she fills the Baron in about the only other man she'd felt comfortable around, and how that led to a physical relationship. The possible replies are a Declaration of Protection, a Love Confession, or a crude joke. Guess which option prematurely ends the romance?
    • You get an oddly large number of chances to introduce yourself by name in Act 3. There's a loading screen tip which you've surely seen a dozen times by now that warns you this might be a bad idea but most people will do it anyway in order to be polite or intimidating. Subverted; it doesn't actually help. If you don't say it someone else will.
  • Screw Your Ultimatum!: If you drive the priestess of Lamashtu out of your lands in chapter three, a subsequent random encounter will have you be accosted by several clerics of Lamashtu who threaten to curse you for disrespecting their goddess unless you make amends. Three possible responses, including the Lawful Goodinvoked option, consist of you saying something along the lines of "the hell with that" and attacking them before they can attempt any such curse.
  • Shout-Out: When you turn the capital into a city, a library will appear on the new map. The head librarian is apparently the Tenth Doctor in disguise:
  • Spiritual Successor: Part of the Western CRPG renaissance. Successor to the Infinity Engine games (Baldur's Gate, Icewind Dale, etc).
  • Split Personality: Farnirras the Pensive. Contrary to the usual iterations of this trope, Farnirras is a despicable man and wannabe (and eventually de facto) lich who conducted inhuman experiments until one of his victims cursed him with the threat of "his worst enemy", triggering a good split personality who sabotaged his experiments and eventually made a suicide gambit to trap him(self) in a prison only the most talented adventurer and monster slayer could enter. Enter you.
  • Stealth Insult: Emphasis on "Insult" during the Rushlight Tournament, as King Irovetti "compliments" your fledgling Kingdom while describing in laborious detail just how screwed up it is, and insinuates that you'd killed a member of a wealthy family who was passing through. With a high enough Bluff skill, you can turn this around by mentioning a fact or two that Irovetti would prefer keep quiet, interrupting your speech with a coughing fit. The same can be accomplished by utilizing a Chekhov's Gun.
  • Stupidity Is the Only Option: In Vordakai's Tomb, even warned as you are by the tooltips and possible in-game knowledge (such as speaking to Kaessi about it), it is impossible to make your companions keep their mouths shut and avoid spawning more Soul Eaters during the halfway point. The smartest option is for the Player Character to pick the characters best suited for dueling a Soul Eater whenever prompted by Horagnamon. It is also impossible to avoid giving Horagnamon the player character's name thanks to one of The Nameless Sisters.
  • Superboss: Ilthuliak the black dragon and Farnirras the lich would have been this at launch, but the Stolen Lands DLC adds an actual Spawn of Rovagug at the bottom of the Tenebrous Depths which decisively takes the cake.
  • Suspicious Video-Game Generosity:
    • The game stops just short of forcing Jubilost into the party (bottlenecking at the river crossing where he can be found and having Linzi gush over his work as an author). He's an alchemist, and comes equipped with a daily supply of acid bombs at the very beginning of a chapter where almost every encounter is rife with trolls who can only be killed by fire or acid. On a lesser note, you'll likely recruit Ekundayo before reaching Trobold, a character who is heavily invested in taking revenge on the trolls, which is very helpful if your party didn't already have an archer to make use of the oversized, acid-tipped magical longbow Devourer of Metal hidden in the trolls' fortress.
    • Lostlarn Keep from the Varnhold's Lot DLC thrusts vast quantities of scrolls and permanent stat boost items on the party shortly before removing Cephal from the group and killing off the rest of your companions other than the General. Justified as the entire dungeon is one big centuries-long prank on the part of the fey.
  • Talking The Villain To Death:
    • While some villains can be convinced to part amicably after fighting them, you can avoid the fight entirely with one of them — namely, Nyrissa.
    • In Varnhold's Lot, the Breather Episode after dealing with the City of Hollow Eyes sets the General against a Galtan agent provocateur stirring up trouble in the town. With the right skill checks, the peasants he's riled up will knock him on the head and apologize for bothering you.
  • Take a Third Option: Many dialogues will unlock extra options depending on various factors, from passing a hidden check to having certain class abilities or spells on hand. Not all of them are necessarily better than the others.
  • Timed Mission: Some quests need to be addressed before the time limit expires. In Act 1, you must defeat the Stag Lord within three months or you lose the game. Furthermore, there are certain events that build up while you manage your Kingdom, and if you don't address the problem in a timely fashion, it's a Game Over.
  • Troll: The Lantern King is an especially malevolent one and Shyka the Many floats between this and The Gadfly.
  • Unwinnable by Mistake: Some end-game Kingdom events have a difficulty check of 40 - if you don't have an advisor that can handle it, it's effectively a Non-Standard Game Over. The designers did implement a workaround by having the Kingdom be "invincible", but it's still frustrating.
    • It's also possible, through Stupid Evil means, to kill every possible candidate for some advisor posts rendering the kingdom segment unwinnable without making it invulnerable. This can border Unwinnable by Insanity given how much of a genocidal lunatic you have to be to kill or fail to recruit all of them, but Councilor is extremely easy to run out of candidates for. Tristian can be killed at the beginning of Chapter 4, Tsanna can be killed multiple times throughout the game, and Shandra Mervey never shows up if she's not chosen in Chapter 1.
  • Vendor Trash: Gems, trinkets and various household items have no purpose other than being sold in bulk for some profit. Non-magical weapons and armor become this as well later in the game.
  • Video Game Caring Potential: invoked Most Neutral Good options veer on this theme, but resolving your companion's personal quests and bringing them closure on their problems is completely possible, as well as attempting to generally be a do-gooder with your subjects and allies. Sometimes it even affects their alignment: Regongar can shift from Chaotic Evil to Chaotic Neutral if you play your cards right in his companion questline.
  • Video Game Cruelty Potential: Comes hand in hand with the options to choose (and shift towards) an Evil alignment:
    • You can "solve" pretty much any problem in your kingdom by executing people for even minor offenses. In some cases you can even arrest or execute the one who accused the culprit for wasting your time.
    • You can willingly ally with or enslave some of the villains after defeating them, including Hargulka, Tartuk and Vordakai.
    • You can kill Tristian after he finds out he's been duped by Nyrissa and begs you for forgiveness.
    • You can also choose to kill Jubilost and Ekundayo as soon as you meet them, for no other reason than they annoy you.
    • Octavia and Ekundayo are kind-hearted and altogether pleasant people. With certain choices during their personal quests, you can corrupt them into becoming cruel and selfish for the former, and hellbent on revenge for the latter.
    • Companion quests in general give a chance to be a total jerk and sometimes shift your allies towards that mindset. You can have Valerie prove her resolve to leave Shelyn's faith resulting in the goddess forgiving her and allowing her to part amicably, or assist her in a bout of murderous, vengeful rampage against her former order. You can shift Jaethal towards being somewhat merciful and avoiding unnecessary bloodshed, or encourage her idea that power comes first whatever the price.
  • Vitriolic Best Buds: Maegar Varn and Cephal Lorentus in the "Varnhold's Lot" DLC. The one is a invoked Chaotic Good rogue and a naturally gifted tactician but bad at seeing the big picture. The other is a Lawful Evil wizard (and a worshiper of Asmodeus) who is a very gifted manager, but often overly suspicious of others' motives. They argue in every scene, but they're best friends. Parodied late in the DLC's major dungeon, where you observe illusory versions of Maegar and Cephal arguing about whether to build a hospital on a cursed cemetery, or to put a mill on the cemetary and the hospital in a plague-ridden wasteland.
  • We Cannot Go On Without You:
    • In the main game, if the Baron/ess dies, that's it, it's an immediate game over and you have to reload a save. This can be particularly frustrating if you have, say, Tristian at level 9+ with a Raise Dead memorized, or have a Raise Dead scroll in inventory, or any number of other ways of raising the player right there without even leaving the map. What this is probably meant to reflect is the nature of your curse, ala how Kanerah demonstrates it with her diabolic contract: the instant she "died", the contract was annulled, despite the fact that she was returned to life (albeit with conditions). Similarly, the nature of your curse means that when you "die", your barony/kingdom is instantly doomed, even if you get restored to life through some means. That situation isn't clear until more than halfway through the game, though, when you've probably had access to even directly-casted raising for a while, particularly if you've been diligent on sidequests.
    • Similarly, if Varn, Cephal or the General die in Varnhold's Lot, it's an instant game over, though this is likely more to do with "well the story's over if they die then", since Varn and Cephal have specific fates to meet in their chapter, and if the General fails to stop Illusia and meet with the Horned Huntsman, things get much, much worse and probably unmanageable for the Baron/ess.
  • What Measure Is a Mook?:
    • The game's treatment of its kobolds, mites, trolls, goblins, and even human barbarians can be seen as a deconstruction, depending on your choices and the Player Character's Character Alignment. invoked They are all capable and guilty of 'evil' acts, that evil may seem intrinsic to their culture, but the way they live and act is significantly influenced by the fact that they're treated as disposable monsters and mooks rather than thinking, feeling beings. The kingdom of Trobold, despite its early stumbles, can grow into a peaceful ally — but it requires the Baron/ess to possess a Chaotic alignment, to be willing to challenge convention and take what the game acknowledges is a fairly serious risk. It can pay off in the ending, where Hargulka's trolls and/or Tartuk's kobolds can become peaceful allies who actually rush to your aid in the final chapter.
    • The kobolds and mites of the Old Sycamore and the goblin tribes of the eastern Dunsward can also become allies, or at least cordial neighbours, through picking the right options (requiring a Neutral alignment for the former and doing Nok-Nok's quest for the latter). This allows the player to build lairs for goblins, kobolds and possibly trolls in the capital, making groups of them a common sight when you walk its streets. Chief Sootscale and Queen B'daah will also rally to your side in the final chapter alongside their tribes.

Get ready. Get scared. Learn. Listen.
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